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May 1, 2020 In The News 7 min read

The COVID-19 pandemic has upended Michigan’s craft brewery industry, and it’s forcing owners to become creative as they balance short-term survival with long-term potential. Ryan Behringer shares his insights with MiBiz.

Close-up photo of a metal vat with a gauge for temperature readings.Since they’ve been forced to close doors to customers, Michigan brewery owners are grappling with how to survive the COVID-19 pandemic. Plante Moran Senior Associate Ryan Behringer recognizes that the breweries who’ve pivoted to new contactless delivery methods are able to keep their lights on as well as engender positive stories in their local regions. While this approach helps right now, owners will have to ask themselves a lot of tough questions and make hard decisions to remain viable in the future.

An essential part of managing a business has always been understanding fixed and variable costs — and this is even more important in these challenging times. Ryan suggests that owners take a deep look at operations to understand the path forward. It’s hard to work under a cloud of uncertainty but knowing your key numbers and how to engage with customers in new ways will determine who the true leaders are.