Budweiser’s big claim to Fort Collins

Unique 2 Colorado

Photo by: Drew Smith

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FORT COLLINS, Colo. -- Well, by golly! Who would've guessed?! The first brewery to ever open up in Fort Collins was actually Budweiser! Strange, huh? After all, Fort Collins is sort of like a craft brewery mecca!

It's true, though. The Budweiser Brewery opened its doors in 1988, nearly 2 decades after Fort Collins lifted its law on prohibition.

See, even though prohibition ended nationally around 1933, Fort Collins had its own local prohibition law in place until 1969.

It is kind of odd it took close to 20 years for a brewery to open in Fort Collins after prohibition ended though, ya know?

Either way, Budweiser is happy to hold the title; especially since it's a big national brewer.

"Bud Light is the best selling beer in the United States," said Steve Schmidt, a tour supervisor at Budweiser's Fort Collins facility.

Budweiser is owned by Anheuser-Busch, which operates 12 Budweiser facilities domestically. Out of those 12, Fort Collins' location is in the top 5. It actually produces about 10 million barrels each year. Simply put, the brewery is constantly brewing beer!

"We have three different shifts, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week," Schmidt said.

Internationally, Anheuser-Busch produces more than 300 brews. One of its more popular domestic beers happens to be Shock Top, which turns out was created at the Fort Collins brewery!

"It was the spring seasonal at the time," Schmidt said.

Initially, Shock Top was called 'Spring Heat, Spiced Wheat'... but that name was... well... boring?

Fact is, Budweiser is a big national brewer. After all, Bud Light is the #1 selling beer in America. But Anheuser-Busch believes the flare from its local facilities truly create its famous flavors!

EDITOR'S NOTE: All week long Channel 2's Kevin Torres will be traveling down the I-25 corridor, from the far northern end of Colorado in Fort Collins to the state's southern sole in Trinidad as part of his 'Unique 2 Colorado' series. Each day Kevin will visit a business or place that's important to its community. You can catch his reports on Channel 2 News at 4pm and 7pm each day.

Here's Kevin's schedule:
Monday: Fort Collins
Tuesday: Longmont
Wednesday: Centennial
Thursday: Pueblo
Friday Trinidad


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