from N.C. News Service
by Stephanie Carrol Carson
North Carolina’s water is brewing up jobs, as beer increasingly helps to shape the economy of the western part of the state. Three national craft breweries have chosen to locate in the area this year: Oskar Blues will open its facility in Brevard in December, followed by Sierra Nevada and New Belgium Brewing on the banks of the French Broad River in Asheville.
Among their reasons cited for choosing what’s now being referred to as “Beer City” is the area’s clean water, says Karen Cragnolin. She is the executive director of Riverlink, a nonprofit group working to revitalize the French Broad.
“They wouldn’t be here if the water was not clean. We have three new breweries here — the second and third-largest craft breweries in the U.S. It’s imperative that we take care of our water.”