Oregon pioneer BridgePort is latest craft brewery to close

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PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) BridgePort Brewery, one of Oregon's oldest craft breweries and a pioneer in the craft beer industry, will stop making its beers immediately and close its brew pub next month, it said in a Facebook post Tuesday.

The Portland institution said sagging sales led it to restructure its operations in 2017 but a continued drop in sales and distribution is now forcing BridgePort to close for good. Its flagship brew pub will remain open until March 10.

The hypercompetitive craft brewery industry in Oregon and throughout the Pacific Northwest is to blame, the company said.

"We would also like to thank ... our BridgePort drinkers, pub customers, and fans ... for your loyal support over the past 35 years. We invite you to stop by the pub for one last pint before we close next month," the statement read. "We would love to host you and reminisce one last time."

BridgePort was one of four initial craft breweries incorporated in Oregon in 1984.

State legislation the following year allowed breweries to sell their beer over the bar in the same place they brewed it, sparking a craft beer explosion in the state and ultimately making Oregon famous for its innovative and high-quality craft beer scene.

BridgePort is the latest in a string of Portland-area breweries to shut down in the past year, the Oregonian/OregonLive reported . Those businesses cited changing demographics, stiff competition and changing tastes as reasons for their closures.

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