Entry deadline extended for Independent Beer Awards

Media Release

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Championing independent brewing, driving quality and celebrating excellence in Australian beer.

The Independent Beer Awards, affectionately known as ‘the Indies’, champions the best of independent Australian brewing. These annual awards, organised by the Independent Brewers Association, are an invaluable platform to showcase excellence in Australian independent beer.

The deadline for entries into the 2019 competition has been extended to Friday 12 July.

Across two days, a respected panel of national and international beer professionals will judge over a thousand entries to provide all entrants with a high-quality competition and meaningful feedback, and consumers with a greater understanding of the depth and diversity of Australian independent beer.

Alongside the Champion Beer Trophies, this year there will be several other formal recognitions.


This year sees the introduction of the Champion Australian Independent Brewpub category to recognise the significant number of brewpubs in Australia and their integral role in the Australian craft beer segment. A Brewpub is determined as servicing its local community and can be a pub, taproom or restaurant that brews beer on-premises, with at least 75% beer sold onsite.

With the introduction of this new category, the previously separate Small and Medium Breweries categories will now come together, with the Champion Australian Independent Large Brewery unchanged.


The awards will this year see a State and Territory Champion Brewery recognised for breweries who have entered at least four beers with at least one achieving a gold medal. The Sate and Territory Champions can be from Brewpub, Small/Medium Brewery or Large Brewery categories.

The IBA will also call for nominations for the industry awards. Nominations are invited from IBA Brewery Members and will be open till Friday 2 August. The IBA board will assess the nominees against the award criteria to vote for a winner in each of the following categories:


The IBA Services to the Industry Award is presented each year to honour an individual who has made an outstanding contribution to the Australian beer industry. This award will recognise the inspiration, enthusiasm and support of an individual which has fundamentally advanced the industry, whether in a particular region or throughout the country.

Awarded to someone who has worked tirelessly to better the beer industry, this award is not limited by industry role and may include brewers, brewery owners, suppliers, journalists, regulators and more.


This award is for someone who is an employee of an IBA member and is under 35. This person shows the potential to be a future industry leader and takes a proactive approach to the industry beyond their role. The Young Gun of the Year will be a high achiever who displays the behaviours and attitudes of indie beer with excellence in their field, a great team worker, strong promoter of independent beer, shows a collaborative nature and is community minded.


This award will recognise an activity or program run by an IBA member that provided support to their community. Celebrating the strong sense of community that independent breweries can nurture in society, the initiative will have raised awareness or funding for a cause that provides a positive impact and would have truly engaged their drinkers in supporting the cause.


The outstanding support of Australian independent beer will be formally recognised this year with the introduction of the True Indie Supporter Award. This accolade will reward a retailer, publican or bar operator who not only supports independent beer through ranging, but also in advocacy, promotion and driving consumer education and awareness in a manner that further enhances the market for Australian independent brewers.

IBA Chairman, Jamie Cook, spoke of the importance of the awards to both the independent beer community and to Australia’s beer loving consumers.

“Independence has shown itself to be a consistent and growing consideration for Australian beer drinkers. The passion, dedication and commitment that independent brewers have translates strongly. These awards confirm the quality that these breweries also produce, showing the strength that comes from the 600 plus breweries that make up the Australian independent beer category.”

The Indies are open for entry to independent Australian brewing companies, as defined by the IBA, who distribute their entered beer in Australia.

A brewing company may enter an unlimited number of beers into the awards however all beers entered must have been available commercially in Australia in the twelve months prior to 30 June 2019 and no single beer can be entered in more than one class.

Packaged and draught versions of the same beer must be entered into the same style. Beers must be entered into the correct style and class according to the IBA 2019 Style Guidelines.

Breweries do not have to be a member of the IBA to enter the Indies, however there are many benefits to supporting the organisation that exists purely to support independent beer, including the use of the IBA’s independent beer logo.

The IBA defines an Independent Brewer as any brewer based in Australia which has an aggregate beer sales <40M litres per calendar year, a brewer with aggregate beer sales of 40M+ litres per calendar year who does not own more than a 20% share or does not itself hold more than a 20% share in a brewery with aggregate beer sales of 40M+ litres per calendar year.

Entries for the 2019 Indies have been extended and will now close Friday 12 July.

Entries can be registered online via the IBA BrewCon website.

Nominations for Industry Awards are now open and nominations can be submitted online.

The Indies will be announced at an industry awards night on Thursday 5 September at Showtime Events, South Wharf, Melbourne. Tickets to the awards night are now available.

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