Over the past two decades, the US and other western countries have seen craft beer explode into the mainstream, but Taiwan and many other Asian countries are only at the beginning of this ascent.
When Taihu Brewing was founded in Taiwan in 2014, craft beer sales were less than 1% of the beer market, but sales of exotic imported beers were rising fast and the ubiquitous Taiwan Beer was losing market share.
“For us, the idea of doing craft beer came from seeing trends in Asia mimicking trends in the US 20 years ago,” says Taihu Brewing CEO Peter Huang.
A lot has changed in four years. Backed by friends, family and a deep-pocketed n on-institutional investor that Huang declines to name, Taihu began by opening craft beer taprooms in Taipei and Taizhong serving on-tap imported beers from famous craft brewers. In 2016, it opened its own pilot brewery.
In April this year Taihu opened its main facility: a production brewery in Xizhi, New Taipei, with a capacity of about 60,000 hectolitres a year, upgradeable to more than 150,000 hectolitres. It cost around NT$500 million–US$16.6 million–to build.
To read our earlier articles in the series, please click here.