The Emergence of Craft Cider
Wine and hard apple cider were both popular American beverages in the 1800s, but fell out of favor partially due to the Temperance movement and prohibition. American wine made its resurgence in the 1970s, but it took until the 2010s for cider to really have its breakout moment. Dr. Greg Peck is a pomologist and cider expert at Cornell University.
Peck… “So we are seeing a huge, huge emergence of craft cider producers, local cider producers, opening up throughout the United States. And so this is super exciting. And they're feeding off of things like the wine trails. They're feeding off of people wanting an agritourism experience, going out for a day trip from an urban area to, you know, where they used to go apple picking. They might still go apple picking, but now they go and go cider tasting as well. They're becoming a really important part of our rural communities, these cider producers.”
Dr. Peck said that while there were many hobbyist cider makers prior to 2010, the commercial cider industry was quite small, and grown about 10-fold over the past 12 years. He added that the rise of the popular brand Angry Orchard, which is owned by the Boston Beer Company, has also helped to spread the popularity of the beverage.