Rising Costs Putting Squeeze on Beer Makers

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- There's more to making beer than just wheat and water - and the rising costs of brewing, bottling and shipping beer could mean that it could soon be getting more expensive to crack open a cold one.

According to a report in Beer Business Daily, the price of a case of Budweiser could soon rise by 55 cents, and other major brewers are also set to increase their prices as well.

This summer's drought has led to an increase in the price of wheat and other grains, and other materials that are necessary to brew and deliver beer - glass bottles, cardboard boxes, and gas for deliver trucks - are going up in price as well.

Boulevard Brewery officials say that they are feeling the pressure to increase their prices as well.

"We saw a lot of increases in 2011, and we did have to make adjustments at that time, but this year we've seen things moderate a little bit," said Jeremy Ragonese of Boulevard Brewery.

According to reports, Anheuser Busch will be increasing the prices of their beer this fall, with the increases varying by brand and market. The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that the beer giant raised their prices 3.5 percent in 2010 and again in the fall of 2011.

Boulevard Brewery says that their higher costs will take a bit longer to trickle down to consumers - but price increases are still likely.

"We do have contracts that are based on more of a long-term engagement, so we're able to moderate those costs a little bit, so the impact isn't felt immediately to the consumer," said Ragonese.

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