Craft brewer, craft distiller
Microbrewers produce and market their own alcoholic drinks like beers, ciders and gins.
Salary range: Variable
How to become a microbrewer
You can get into this job through:
- an apprenticeship
- specialist training courses
- setting up your own business
You could start by doing a brewer higher apprenticeship with a brewing company.
There are no set entry requirements but it may help you to get in if you have:
- 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) and A levels, or equivalent, for a higher or degree apprenticeship
You could take professional qualifications. These are offered by the Institute of Brewing & Distilling, either online or at a training centre. You can also train with private companies who offer specialist courses in brewing.
Professional and industry bodies
You could join the Society of Independent Brewers for training opportunities and to make industry contacts.
What it takes
Skills and knowledge
- knowledge of manufacturing production and processes
- observation and recording skills
- the ability to operate and control equipment
- patience and the ability to remain calm in stressful situations
- the ability to monitor your own performance and that of your colleagues
- excellent verbal communication skills
- the ability to work on your own
- to be flexible and open to change
- to be able to carry out basic tasks on a computer or hand-held device
Restrictions and requirements
You must register your premises with the environmental health department of your local council.
What you’ll do
Your day-to-day duties may include:
- creating your own drinks recipes
- ordering raw ingredients from suppliers
- setting up and monitoring beer or spirits production
- bottling and packing finished products
- cleaning and maintaining equipment
- promoting your drinks at local markets, beer festivals and on social media
- taking customer orders and arranging deliveries
- attending product launches and tasting sessions
- recruiting and training new staff
You could work at a brewery, distillery or in a workshop.
Your working environment may be humid and physically active.
You may need to wear safety clothing and use safety equipment.
Career path and progression
You could increase production volume and become a bigger brewery, or work for a larger brewery company as a master brewer. You could also become a consultant, giving advice to others on setting up in the craft drinks trade.
You could run brewing or distilling workshops for people new to microbrewing or for hobbyists.