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Sales of SC beer to expand to 20 states under deal with Fat Tire maker

Island Coastal Lager (copy)

Sullivan's Island-based beer brand Island Coastal Lager will now be served aboard Carnival Cruise Line ships. Provided.

A Sullivan's Island company that launched its first and only beer in 2017 is set to expand its distribution to 20 states under a deal with one of the nation's biggest craft brewers.

The makers of Island Coastal Lager announced the agreement with New Belgium Brewing on Wednesday. 

Financial terms were not disclosed.

Starting this month, Fort Collins, Colo.-based New Belgium will handle all brewing and logistics for the South Carolina brand, which was founded by and is still owned by Brandon Perry and Scott Hansen.

“The brewing expertise and access that NBB can provide ... makes them a perfect partner as we accelerate growth within the U.S.,” Hansen said in prepared remarks.

New Belgium will produce draft kegs and package 12-ounce and 16-ounce cans of the American-style lager, with plans to "increase production exponentially," according to a written statement.

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Perry and Hansen have said they came up the idea for their "easy drinking" craft beer while on a trip to Cuba.

Island Coastal was originally brewed in Lakeland, Fla., when it made its debut in South Carolina in October 2017, according to a news report. Sales were expanded later to four more states — North Carolina, Georgia, Alabama and Florida.

Last year, Carnival Cruise Lines began carrying the lager on its entire fleet of 26 ships. 

Island Coast's new business partner is a big player in the craft-brewing industry that churns out 15 year-round beers, including the well-known Fat Tire Amber Ale.

“Island Coastal Lager is at an exciting inflection point having created both a lifestyle brand and a high-quality product that more consumers are quickly embracing,” New Belgium CEO Steve Fechheimer said. “We look forward to helping the Island team further by providing high quality beer and logistics services as ICL expands to the entire East Coast and west through Texas.”

Contact John McDermott at 843-937-5572 or follow him on Twitter at @byjohnmcdermott

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