Tips on Choosing a Brewery Equipment Vendor

Purchasing equipment for your craft brewery is not a decision to be taken lightly. New and even used brewing equipment purchases can cost tens of thousands to hundreds of thousands of dollars and take weeks if not months to deliver. Ordering new equipment is a massive liability for a startup or expanding brewhouse. The experienced professionals at Brewery finance understand what you’re putting on the line when you order equipment and can help recommend some of the best, most reliable vendors in America who work specifically with craft brewers.

Don’t Purchase Equipment Directly from Overseas Vendors:

While the price tag might look appealing, we strongly recommend avoiding purchasing equipment directly from overseas vendors. Not only are financing applications difficult to process for foreign purchases, but the liability is also higher, with payment in full required up front sometimes weeks before the product arrives for inspection. If the equipment arrives damaged, there is no financial recourse for the buyer or the financier.

Brewery Finance had a client who purchased foreign-made equipment from an international vendor. He paid cash in full upfront and patiently waited for his brewery equipment to arrive. When the equipment arrived in the brewhouse none of the electronics in the control panel were properly rated for the United States and had to be completely redone. Devastatingly, he had to file bankruptcy before he could even open the brewhouse because of the cost of the equipment spiraling out of control.

Purchasing Imported Equipment from North American Vendors:

We don’t ever want to see our clients experience hardship like that described above and as such strongly recommend working with North American vendors who offer equipment operations and maintenance customer support within the US. Especially for brewing equipment, canning equipment, and packaging equipment with a vast array of moving parts, regional customer service is ideal. We can even endorse buying imported equipment if it is approved and resold through an American vendor who offers onsite customer service and insures against damage.

Prepare for Longer Than Anticipated Lead Times:

One other important tip for craft brewers choosing equipment vendors is to no matter what, be prepared for a longer than anticipated lead time. Even the most reliable vendors are struggling with supply chain issues and staffing shortages that are affecting the delivery time of equipment and products across all industries. As you plan and prepare for the arrival of your new equipment, build in a grace period for equipment arrival and work with a vendor who is willing to be transparent with you about delays and estimated delivery dates.

Ultimately, the decision about the equipment vendor you choose is yours and yours alone, but we are happy to provide recommendations. Contact a representative of Brewery Finance today to discuss financing your equipment purchase and vendor recommendations.