Size of Craft, Micro, Nano, Pico Brewery | A Complete Guide

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Are you one of those people who are interested in the craft of brewing? Perhaps you wish to consider setting up your business, and you might want to determine how you could get started with your own craft brewery. But there are a lot of things you need to consider before you set your own brewery.

Size of Craft, Micro, Nano, and Pico Brewery

One thing that you need to understand is that the size of the brewery decides the production cost and the amount of brewed beer. That will also decide the size of the plant that you’ll need. So, before you decide on beginning a brewery business, you need material. equipment, and the building conditions.

The size of a brewery is the amount of beer it produces annually. A craft brewery produces less than 15000 barrels annually. A microbrewery produces 1000-15000 barrels annually. A nano-brewery produces 500-1000 barrels annually. A pico brewery produces less than 500 barrels annually. Lastly, a home brewery produces about 6.6 barrels annually.

So, today I am going to tell you the size of breweries in detail. We’ll discuss the different sizes of craft breweries. Craft breweries are of different types and range from microbreweries to home breweries. Let’s see all about the size of the craft, micro, nano, and pico brewery in this brewery size guide.

What Is A Brewery?


Before we start discussing the different sizes of breweries, let’s first discuss what is a brewery. A brewery is a place to make and sell beer. I think you might already know this. Another name for a brewery is beerhouse. The equipment that is used to make beer is called a plant. The person in charge of the brewing process is called a brewmaster and the plant mainly employs biotech and chemistry engineers for handling the processes.

Brewing is actually an ancient process with the industry starting as a cottage industry. Many of the breweries that started were actually home brewing, making and selling beer at a smaller rate. In today’s time and age, breweries have a wide range of sizes, ranging from a colossal production brewery to a tiny home brewery.

Breweries don’t just keep on making beer. They brew beer in batches and the production of bears is measured in gallons or barrels (barrels being the commonly used measure). A barrel equals 31 gallons. I leave it to you to do the math.

The brewery size depends on the area and production of beer in it. There are mainly three kinds of breweries depending on size; productional, regional, and craft. Productional breweries are the biggest of them all and produce more than 6 million barrels annually. The regional breweries are also large, producing about 15000 to 6 million barrels annually. So, naturally, any brewery that produces less than 15000 barrels annually classifies as a craft brewery.

Craft breweries are also classified into four categories; micro, nano, pico, and home. If a brewery produces between 1000 to 15000 barrels annually, it is classified as a microbrewery. If it produces 500-1000 barrels annually, it is called a nano brewery. If it produces less than 500 barrels, it classifies as a pico brewery. Lastly, if a brewery produces about 6-7 barrels annually, it classifies as a home brewery. Here is a list that’ll help you understand this better.

Types of Breweries

  1. Production Brewery – Produces more than 6 million barrels annually
  2. Region Brewery – Produces 15000 to 6 million barrels annually
  3. Craft Brewery – Produces less than 15000 barrels annually

Types of Craft Breweries

  1. Micro Brewery – Produces about 1000 – 15000 barrels annually
  2. Nano Brewery – Produces about 500 – 1000 barrels annually
  3. Pico Brewery – Produces less than 500 barrels annually
  4. Home Brewery – Produces about 6-7 barrels annually

Now, that you have some idea about what is a brewery and about the different types let’s see the different types of craft breweries in detail.

What Is A Craft Brewery?

Craft Brewery

Craft breweries produce beer at a smaller annual rate as compared to production or regional breweries. Craft breweries are privately owned and produce less than 15000 barrels a year. Craft breweries produce premium brewed beers. It is usually perceived that as craft breweries brew lesser beer, the beer is high in flavor and quality.

Craft breweries are often called microbreweries but they are a little different. A craft brewery is a broader term that engulfs four kinds of breweries, of which microbrewery is one part.

As I said, craft breweries further branch into four kinds of breweries. They are microbrewery, nano-brewery, pico brewery, and home brewery. Let’s discuss these as well.

1. Micro Brewery


Microbrewery refers to a brewery that produces batches of 1000-15000 barrels annually. So, any brewery that produces at least 1000 barrels annually classifies as a microbrewery. The microbrewery generally has one system and have a 30 – 60 barrel brew system. Microbreweries are famous for making premium beers for a higher price than mass-produced beer.

2. Nano Brewery


Nano brewery is sometimes referred to as a ‘scaled-down microbrewery’. A nano-brewery produces less or almost equal barrels than a microbrewery. A nano-brewery produces about 500 – 1000 barrels annually. Thus, the operations of a nano brewery are small brewing operations.

3. Pico Brewery


A pico brewery is even smaller than a nano-brewery. A pico brewery doesn’t produce beer on regular basis but every other day. They use a 1-3 barrel brew system. In terms of size, a pico brewery produces less than 500 barrels annually.

4. Home Brewery

home brewery

A home brewery is different from the above-mentioned breweries. All the above breweries are licensed. A home brewery doesn’t use the plant on a regular basis. Instead, it produces beer every other week. A homebrewer produces about 200 gallons annually that translates to 6.6 barrels a year. A lot of homebrewers produce an average of 5 barrels a year.

If a home brewery hits the 200-gallon brew mark annually, it is called a Femto brewery. Homebrewers don’t sell the beer commercially and most of their beer is consumed by their family and friends.

What Is A Brewpub?


A brewpub is slightly different than a craft brewery. A brewpub is a combination of a brewery and a pub. It is a pub that brews the beer they serve in-house. A brewhouse is also called a taproom brewery. A brewpub produces about or less than 15000 barrels annually. About 75% of the beer is consumed in the pub itself while the rest is sold commercially. The brewpub has a 3-7.5 barrel brew system making it almost the size of a nano-brewery.


So, this was all about the craft brewery and all of its types. Now, you know the sizes of a micro, nano, pico, and home brewery, I have also given you two cents about a brewpub. So, now you know all about the sizes of breweries. I’ll see you next time with more informative articles. Until then, keep brewing!

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