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Beer Money: Anheuser-Busch Will Put $30M Into L.A. Brewery Upgrade

The Anheuser-Busch Brewery in Van Nuys (Google Street View)
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This Bud's for you, Van Nuys: We might be increasingly interested in craft beer in Los Angeles, but we're also home to a major brewery that's been bottling beer since the 1950s. Now that facility, the Anheuser-Busch brewery in Van Nuys, is about to get a $30 million upgrade as part of an over $1 billion investment plan the company is making towards their American operations.That $30 million in capital investments will be used "for various projects, including environmental modifications to reduce the amount of fiberboard required for packaging and updated energy efficient lighting," according to Anheuser-Busch.

The Van Nuys brewery opened in 1954, and was a major boon for the community, who welcomed the beer-making operation gladly. In addition to the beer business, for sometime the company operated a tropical-themed amusement park, Busch Gardens, adjacent to the brewery. Even better for employees (well, most of them) was a "free beer" policy and "beer breaks" that came with the job, until the plan was axed in 1986. The "free beer" lasted longer than Busch Gardens, which, on its last legs as a bird sanctuary, finally closed down in 1979.

Many locals and history buffs may be sad to know that the new $30M is not going to revive the theme park, but rather make things more modern inside the brewery and to make the production of beer at the facility more eco-friendly.

The Annheuser-Busch brewery in Los Angeles is just one reason why California was recently named the #1 beer stare in the nation.