A family owned Salford brewery is busier than ever before, thanks to a surge in craft beer sales during lockdown.
While businesses across Manchester are struggling to stay afloat during the pandemic, Seven Bro7hers Brewing Company is looking to expand after a successful lockdown period.
The brewing house, based in Salford Quays, was established in 2014 after the seven McAvoy brothers decided to pursue a career in the business of beer.
As well as a brewery, the company also owns two beer houses – one in Ancoats and one in Middlewood Locks.
Keith McAvoy, 51, the second eldest of the brothers, said: “Our online beer sales went through the roof during lockdown.”
The company had to overcome many challenges in navigating the coronavirus pandemic from a business perspective, but Seven Bro7hers has come out stronger for it.
This is only partially down to the help of Government schemes such as Eat Out to Help Out and the furlough scheme.
But the McAvoy brothers credit the friendly, supportive nature of the craft beer community and the hard work of their loyal staff, alongside their own hard work, for the continued success of the business.
Keith said: “There were huge efforts from every single member of our team to ensure that we could continue trading, despite all the challenges like curfews and ensuring everyone can social distance on our premises.
“I think when the public see that you’re doing all you can to create a safe environment, then they will be more likely to support you.”
The brother’s love of beer came from their father, Eric, who brewed it in the family basement where they grew up in Salford.
As each one of the brothers turned 18, their first legal pint was in the cellar of the family home, so ale has a real and special significance to all of them.
Although their father sadly passed away two years ago, he was able to watch on with pride as his seven sons started their craft beer business venture, which has grown exponentially since 2014.
Keith and his brothers also have four sisters, who followed in their brother’s footsteps, setting up Four Sis4ers gin distillery – making them the largest family of direct siblings in the global alcohol industry.
Following a successful crowdfunding campaign during lockdown which raised £430,000, Seven Bro7hers gained support from a mix of existing and brand-new investors.
Now, they are looking ahead to the future, with plans underway for new bars in Liverpool and Leeds in the coming months.
Keith added: “We tend to open up bars in residential areas so we can become part of the community there.
“Craft beer is an open, friendly environment. Socialising and beer go hand in hand.
“We want to keep expanding on a national scale and continue doing what we love.”