"Even if one category is in trouble, the other three are able to hold it up," says Gregg Christiansen, CEO of Columbia Distributing.
says, "We are seeing some positive turnaround on the import category, but the biggest positives are still in the craft.
describes the company's hold on the craft beer market in the Pacific Northwest as an "evolution" that began in the '90s when the company identified that the craft beer segment was one that warranted attention and called for investment.
MillerCoors, says Christiansen
, has been supportive of Columbia's efforts in the craft beer segment.
definitely understands the development of the craft category and the importance of the craft category and that's evident by their new Tenth and Blake Company
"They are working with us closely in both markets in developing the craft category."
"We always field any opportunity that comes before us," says Christiansen
"If an opportunity presents itself for continuous growth we are going to be ready for it."
Keeping it Green
"When you are working in one of the greenest markets around-Oregon-you are very conscious of it," says Gregg Christiansen, CEO of Columbia Distributing.
In addition to investing in alternative fuel vehicles and hybrids, using compressed natural gas where possible and making recycling a part of the daily practices of the workday-an estimated 12 tons of shrink wrap, cardboard, glass and plastic are recycled each month-Columbia makes an active effort to lead by example.
The company has what it calls an Environmental Coordination Outreach (ECO) team, a panel of employees who promote and educate others within the company using the three R's (reduce, reuse and recycle).
The company also encourages volunteerism within the community, compensating employees for up to 12 hours of volunteer time per calendar year.
And if an employee makes a donation to a charity, the company will match that donation, up to $250 annually, Christiansen
In 2010, Columbia and its employees gave more than $100,000 to local and national non-profit organizations.
"It's definitely a high priority for us," Christiansen
says of the company's community outreach effort.
"It's a good program and it helps bring talent into our company," says Gregg Christiansen, CEO of Columbia Distributing.