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Some of the first beer produced in Minnesota was by the John Orth Brewery on the first of November, 1850. In 1890, the John Orth Brewing Company was consolidated with the Minneapolis Brewing and Malting Company. When it was organized in 1890, the Minneapolis Brewing and Malting Company consisted of four breweries – the Orth plant, The Heinrich Brewing Association, the Noerenburg Brewery, and the Germania Brewing Association. In 1893 the consolidated business was reorganized and incorporated under the name of the Minneapolis Brewing Company.
Other early breweries in Minnesota in the late 1800s include the William Bierbauer Brewery in Mankato (circa 1850), Gluek Brewing Company in Minneapolis (est. 1857), Yoerg Brewing Company (est. 1858), August Schell Brewing Company in New Ulm (est. 1860), Theodor Hamm Brewing Company in St. Paul (est. 1865), and Jacob Schmidt Brewing Company in St. Paul (est. 1884).
Today there are more than forty operating brewpubs and breweries in Minnesota, and new breweries and distilleries continue to open in Minnesota at a rate not seen since prior to Prohibition.