LANSING – Michigan distributors are renewing their strong commitment to promoting Michigan’s more than 100 hometown craft beers, with many locally owned distributors actively hosting and participating in regional events to showcase Michigan’s globally renowned beers. “Michigan beer distributors are proud to work with local craft brewers to get their products into markets across the state, providing Michigan consumers with a wide range of choices that the Great Beer State offers today – and helping local business thrive,” said Mike Lashbrook, president of the Michigan Beer and Wine Distributors Association. “In many cases, distributors work hand-in-hand with craft brewers and small producers in their communities to find the best ways to help their products get off the ground. Michigan’s current system of effective, responsible and market-driven beer distribution is a key factor that’s helping brewers large and small compete on a level playing field so they can grow and succeed.” Michigan distributors are celebrating American Craft Beer Week by hosting, sponsoring and supporting several local events during the week, May 13-May 20. Michigan distributors are national leaders in their efforts to distribute craft beers, winning awards for their achievements. Among the activities Michigan distributors are supporting to spotlight Michigan craft beers are: Featuring craft beers in their advertising Holding craft beer promotion nights at retail locations Supporting local craft beer festivals Today, Michigan is the fifth largest – and fifth best – craft beer state in the nation, according to USA Today and other media outlets in recent news reports. The Michigan Brewers Guild says Michigan is now home to more than 130 craft brewers, multiplying rapidly from just a few small brewers in the 1990s. Last year, Michigan craft beer sales grew 16 percent, according to Mlive.com April 22. Craft brewers also credited Michigan’s beer distribution system for helping their sector enjoy rapid growth. Michigan Brewers Guild President Scott Graham told Mlive.com for an April 22 article: “I think there's tremendous room for continued growth and I think that everybody's going to see more local brew pubs emerge in their areas if they don't already have them, and I think you're going to see the Michigan brewers continue to be very successful with their efforts both in their operations at home and through the distribution channels in Michigan and beyond.” To find a local beer distributor serving specific counties with stories of working with craft brewers, contact 482-5555, ext. 14, or visit www.mbwwa.org.