Southwest Michigan's Second Wave Craft Beer Writer Jeremy Martin says Kalamazoo is becoming known for breweries as much as it is for free college and Gibson Guitars.
Martin says that has allowed a number of spin-off businesses to develop in Southwest Michigan. He wrote about some of them recently in an article for Second Wave. Martin told WMUK's Gordon Evans that the craft beer industry has led to a documentary film about craft beer, soap made in part from spent grains and used hops from the breweries, and walking tours which include stops at many of the beer makers in town.
Kalamazoo's reputation for innovation has been enhanced by the breweries, according to Martin. He says the craft beer industry fits nicely into the Kalamazoo arts scene, and shows off the city's creativity.
Kalamazoo and the surrounding area is home to many different types of breweries. Martin says people in these businesses wonder if that can be sustained. But he says there are fewer independent brewers now than there were before prohibition. And Martin says there are lot more people in the country who have shown a desire for craft beer and the other products it's inspired.