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Upper Canada Brewing grows by 30 percent.

Upper Canada Brewing grows by 30 percent

Since 1985, when the Upper Canada Brewing Co. was established "to make the best beer possible," its sales have grown every year, and 1990, with 30-percent growth in overall sales, is no exception.

"While we are still very small compared to the major breweries, and even some of the mid-sized breweries, we are doing something right to buck the overall trend," explained Frank Heaps, Upper Canada's founder and president. "I would have to attribute [the increase] primarily to our dedication to quality, purity and taste."

Heaps cited some other reasons behind Upper Canada's growth, one being the current interest in specialty beers. "There is a growing segment of the market that knows and understands what really good beer is, how it's made and what it tastes like," Heaps said. "They want more taste in their beer. Today, consumers want purity, freshness and no chemicals, and that's what we give them, in ten, distinctive, fine lagers and ales."

Heaps added that the company does no advertising. "We've learned that our customers are quite knowledgeable and sophisticated, and are not impressed with advertising," Heaps noted. "Also, advertising for our kind of `niche' or specialty product is really not very cost effective. We concentrate on the quality of what's inside the bottle.

"That's why," Heaps continued, "we decided to pay the price to truck Caledon Spring water to the brewery daily rather than spend the money on glitzy advertising or packaging."

While Upper Canada's sales have grown at a healthy rate, the same has not always been true regarding profitability.

"It's been a very tough five years," Heap admitted, "but with the support of our dedicated staff and shareholders, about half of whom are staff, we have attained modest profitability in this our sixth year. We're not exactly rolling cash, but we are financially sound and in a position to fund our growth without incurring further debt."
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Title Annotation:Upper Canada Brewing Co.
Publication:Modern Brewery Age
Date:Dec 17, 1990
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