Manufacturing Process Optimization for a Small Scale Craft Brewery
Rivera Vélez, Ashleen Marie
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This research empirically examines the process of craft beer manufacturing in a newly established Microbrewery. Craft beer is the fastest growing segment, with an increase in sales of 151% from 2011 to 2012. This popularity increase is due, along with other factors, to the shift in the taste of the consumers towards a more complex preference. The nature of this small business makes it imperative for the budget to be carefully managed. In order to maximize the use of capital investment, the logistics of the process need to be defined from the beginning. Lean manufacturing tools are used to analyze and improve the brewing system. The methods employed require the implementation of a descriptive phase, evaluative phase and assessment phase. The production process is optimized, resulting in a reduction of about 25 percent in production time and an increase of 50 percent in manufacturing volume. Key Terms - Craft beer, Lean Manufacturing, Microbrewery, Process improvement.