The state of Oklahoma and an industry group have partnered to launch a campaign meant to inspire Oklahomans and visitors to explore the state's craft breweries.
The Oklahoma Craft Beer Trail is a project of the Oklahoma Department of Agriculture, Food and Forestry's agritourism program and the Craft Brewers Association of Oklahoma.
30,000 printed maps of craft breweries with taprooms will be distributed at Oklahoma welcome centers to promote them, according to a news release from ODAFF.
“Our craft beer industry continues to grow in Oklahoma with an economic impact of $700 million a year,” CBAO executive director Tabbi Burwell said in a statement. “As we develop this trail and continue to push for more tourism in taprooms, a craft beer trail only helps put our state on the map after years of pushing for modernization.”
Reached by phone Wednesday morning, Burwell said there are 60 breweries currently listed on the map with more to come. In addition to economic impact for brewers and the state, she said another goal is to inspire more connections between local growers and local beermakers.
"For example, 405 Brewing out of Norman, they have a farmer that they work with and they're supplying them the fruits and berries to make their sours," Burwell said.
"Our breweries are reliant on our own local farmers here," Burwell said. "There are definitely things that they can not get in Oklahoma, but I think that their first choice ... is to try here first."
"We do hope that this is going to boost economic impact within Oklahoma, and drive tourism within these small communities where these craft breweries are," said Micaela Danker, agritourism coordinator at ODAFF.
"We market 350 farms and ranches and other agribusinesses across the state where they provide agriculture experiences," Danker said. "[The beer trail] just adds one other unique sector into our agritourism program."