Beer Wiki

Founders Brewing Company is a brewery located in Grand Rapids, Michigan, USA.


Canal Street Brewing Company was organized in 1996 as John Pannell Brewing Company by Mike Stevens and Dave Engbers, who began operation and changed the company's name to Canal Street Brewing Co. in 1997. Stevens and Engbers were homebrewing enthusiasts who had recently graduated from college. The brewery got its name from a part of Grand Rapids where, in the 19th century, several breweries were located on Canal Street (Monroe Avenue). The beer bottle's label originally included an old black and white photo of the original Canal Street breweries with the word "Founders" above it. Thus, the company became known as Founders Brewing Company.

Since the mid-2000s, Founders has become one of the most prominent breweries in Michigan, expanding its market to 37 states and its production capacity to 340,000 barrels per year. Founders was the 30th largest US craft brewery by sales volume in 2012, and 41st largest US brewery by sales volume in 2012. By 2014, Founders had climbed to the 17th largest craft brewery based on sales volume and the 23rd largest overall. In 2014, Founders announced another expansion, costing $35 million, to double the production capacity at its Grand Rapids facility. When the expansion is complete, Founder's says it will be able to produce 900,000 barrels per year.

As of 2013, two of its beers, Kentucky Breakfast Stout (KBS) and Canadian Breakfast Stout (CBS), were ranked among BeerAdvocate's top 10 beers, with CBS ranked as the fourth best beer in the world by user review. In a 2013 poll, listed Founders as the third best brewery in the world; Founders was second place in 2011 and 2012. In April 2010, Founders won four medals at the World Beer Cup in Chicago, Illinois, and the brewery went on to win two more medals at Denver's Great American Beer Festival in September of that year. The brewery also won an award at the 2012 World Beer Cup in San Diego, California.