Press Release

America’s Beer Distributors Deliver Effective Advocacy at NBWA Legislative Conference

More than 600 beer distributors came to Washington to share the story of a great American industry

WASHINGTON, D.C. – This week, April 14-17, more than 600 members of the National Beer Wholesalers Association (NBWA) shared the beer distribution industry’s story with federal policymakers at the annual NBWA Legislative Conference.

Over the course of the week, beer distributors met with over 400 congressional offices to advocate on issues that impact the industry, including tax competitiveness for Main Street businesses, maintaining longstanding differences in the federal alcohol tax structure and support for our nation’s well-regulated state-based alcohol system.

Beer distributors create over 137,000 jobs and contribute more than $30 billion in annual economic impact to communities across the country. Distribution professionals safely and responsibly bring alcohol products from suppliers of all sizes to market, ensuring consumer choice and playing a key role in collecting over $40 billion in annual sales and excise taxes.

In his address to attendees, NBWA President and CEO Craig Purser reiterated the importance of raising these key points during member advocacy, particularly amidst an unpredictable political climate.

“We do this work year after year, Congress after Congress, to take control of our destiny in a political landscape defined by uncertainty,” said Purser, who urged members to share their stories of local service and economic impact with policymakers. “In a time of uncertainty, beer distributors are there every day serving your neighbors. You’re that constant in the storm, certainty in a time of anything but and you always deliver for your communities.”

This year’s conference featured keynote speeches from House Democratic Caucus Chair Pete Aguilar (D-CA) and House Majority Whip Tom Emmer (R-MN). Other speakers included Pluribus News founder and editor Reid Wilson and an industry leaders panel consisting of:

  • John Bodnovich, Executive Director, American Beverage Licensees
  • Brian Crawford, President and CEO, Beer Institute
  • Justin Kissinger, President and CEO, World Brewing Alliance
  • Bob Pease, President and CEO, Brewers Association

NBWA Chair Jim Fabiano II, President and CEO of Fabiano Brothers, Inc., opened Tuesday’s general session with a call-to-action for members to take advantage of opportunities to advocate directly with Members of Congress and staff.

“Our association is a powerful vehicle for ensuring the future success of our industry,” said Fabiano. “Your meetings with Washington policymakers over the next two days will complement NBWA’s important year-round work of sharing our industry’s great story.”

The 2024 Legislative Conference began with the second annual Building Relationships & Empowering Women (BREW) Leadership Forum, where over 131 attendees convened to elevate women in the beer distribution industry. The event featured professional development opportunities and stirring keynote addresses from Congresswoman Erin Houchin (IN-9) and Fortune 500 consultant Amy Jo Martin.


The National Beer Wholesalers Association (NBWA) represents America’s 3,000 independent beer distributors who service every state, congressional district and media market across the country. Licensed at the federal and state levels, beer distributors get bottles, cans, cases and kegs from a brewer or importer to stores, restaurants and other licensed retail accounts through a transparent and accountable regulatory system. Distributors build brands of all sizes – from familiar domestic beers to new startup labels and imports from around the world – and generate enormous consumer choice while supporting more than 137,000 quality jobs in their home communities. Beer distributors work locally to keep communities safe by sponsoring programs to promote responsible consumption, combat drunk driving and reduce underage drinking.