After Closing Down, America's Oldest Brewery May Still Have A Chance

After operating for 127 years, Anchor Brewing announced its closure on July 12. The brewery shuttered after facing financial issues due to lower sales and high economic pressures related to operating in San Francisco. When the news broke, the brewery planned to cease all production and sell off its remaining inventory through the end of July. The taproom formally closed its doors Sunday, July 30.

So many fans gathered to say goodbye to the craft brewery that some were actually denied entry. Fortunately for those who didn't get a chance to say goodbye to the business, there's still a potential future for the beleaguered brewery.

The liquidation of Anchor Brewing will begin in August, and brand spokesperson Sam Singer reportedly told CNN that there are quite a few people who hope to purchase pieces of the company at an auction as they go up for sale. These potential purchasers — which include some of Anchor Brewing's employees — could allow the brewery to live on, if in a bit of a different way.

Anchor Brewing's employees are passionate about the company

CNN reports that the employees hoping to purchase the company are unionized and would run the brewery as a worker co-op. In a letter, the workers said they want to "continue to do our jobs, make the beer we love, and keep this historic institution open." The union, Warehouse Union Local 6 ILWU, has reportedly hired two law firms to assist with bidding to purchase the brewery after Anchor's owner, Sapporo Breweries, refused to disclose financial records.

The auction would allow bidders to purchase the company's taprooms, intellectual property, and beverage recipes (including the one for Anchor's steam beer), allowing the purchasers to continue producing the brewery's products under new ownership. Of course, it wouldn't be the first time the brewery operated under new ownership; Sapporo Breweries purchased the company in 2017.

In addition to the Anchor employees, around 24 investors are reportedly interested in getting involved with the auction. Although the future of Anchor Brewing is still currently unclear, the asset sales may provide some answers as to what will happen to the company — and it could provide hope for some Anchor fans.