Local development, especially in outlying or declining regions, is a perennial issue. “Neolocalism,” a combined marketing and community-building approach, draws upon and strengthens local identity and culture to create unique products, to bolster tourism and place branding, but also as ends in themselves. Craft breweries are often associated with neolocalism. In this paper, which focuses on peripheral regions of Québec, we first explore how brewers perceive their connection with local areas: whilst marketing is part of the story, local development and community revitalization are also important to them. We then assess the degree to which local development aspirations are reflected at a wide scale, using a quantitative approach. Whilst there is evidence that local breweries in peripheral areas are associated with a wider tourist economy—comprising hospitality and cultural sectors—there is no evidence that breweries are associated with higher incomes or economic vitality. This contrasts with regions closer to metropolitan areas, where there is less evidence of local tourist economies in the vicinity of craft breweries, but where breweries tend to locate in more prosperous and economically dynamic areas, likely for reasons of market access.
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