About us

Memorable experiences are at the heart of what we do

We know the best times are the ones you don’t want to end. Having a great drink with you might not make them last longer, but a good BC brew after a great experience is always great to relax with. You don’t need to be some kind of expert to enjoy what we make, but even if you are, we’re pretty confident you’ll like what you taste.  

You might not notice us rocking our flannel shirts on a hike or eating a bag of all-dressed chips while we’re out and about, but you will notice what we make. Both satisfaction and affordability are the essence of every one of our brands. We hope you enjoy the drinks we make as much as we enjoy creating and drinking them ourselves.

Our Story

Pacific Western Brewing (PWB) believes that as a company supporting our people and the community where we live and work is important. From the beginning, PWB has invested in activities and projects that make a positive impact and contribute to the well-being of our community.

1969

First malt liquor in Canada After a series of beer releases, great success was achieved through the launch of the “Uncle Bens Malt Liquor.” 

1978

Prince George Breweries Ltd. took over the brewery New company headed by PG businessman Bob Naismith and his partner Nelson, started its operation. However, the brewery was taken over by Old Fort Brewing in 1981 and there were several ownership changes throughout the 80s.  

1982

First dark mild beer in Canada Canterbury Dark Mild was launched to pay tribute to Britain and the Canterbury Cathedral. 

1982

Strange Brew filmed on location Strange Brew was filmed at Pacific Western Brewing’s headquarters. This film was a 1983 Canadian comedy starring the popular SCTV characters Bob and Doug McKenzie (portrayed by Dave Thomas and Rick Moranis who also served as co-directors) as they get jobs at the Elsinore Brewery, only to learn that something is rotten with the state of it.

1988

First dry beer in Canada

1991

Kazuko Komatsu became seventh owner of the brewery The brewery really started to claim its place as a stable, job-sustaining, quality-focused, community-oriented cornerstone in the Prince George business community.

1993

First ice beer in Canada

1995

First malted herb beer in Canada

1996

First lager/lime beer in Canada After experimenting with flavored beers, the Dude Lime beer was launched. 

1996

Improved quality Became the inaugural brewery in North America to adopt the certified ISO 9002 quality assurance standard.

1997

First certified organic lager beer in Canada

2005

First Canadian Gold Medal Winner at the Industry International Awards in Munich Germany

2008

Silver award for the American-style dark lager

2013

Improving technology PWB installed a 10 hectolitre (HL) small batch pilot brewing system in 2013 that allows the brewery to develop new leading-edge recipes and offer one-off beers and seasonal releases. The equipment complements PWB’s existing production system that is responsible for the brewery’s entire product lineup with annual production in excess of 150,000 HL.

2015

Sponsoring the Canada Winter Games PWB sponsored the 2015 Canada Winter Games in the city and supported a number of charities including the Prince George Foundation, the three Prince George Rotary Clubs and others.

2017

60th anniversary of brewing on the banks of the Nechako in Prince George The words of the first brewery’s president, Donald Lauder of Vancouver, echo back through the decades: “We are more firmly convinced than ever that the company’s choice of Prince George as its home was its soundest step.”

2017

Helping the forests A team of more than 90 tree planters plants 100,000 seedlings on Crown land that had been scorched by the devastating Elephant Hill forest fire.

2018

Improving the brewery The brewery invests $4 million in technological upgrades.

2018

New beer release Release of the first batch of Pacific Free: A “gluten removed” lager for a discerning, health-conscious generation of beer lovers.

2019

Cariboo Genuine Draft wins bronze trophy Pacific Western Brewing’s Cariboo Genuine Draft was awarded a bronze trophy in the “light lager” category at the Canadian International Beer Awards in Edmonton, Alberta.

Our
Company

Our Vision

Achieving sustainable company growth.

Our Mission

Our mission is to be the best beverage manufacturer in western Canada through inspired ownership, our team, and our brands. We are a company that gives back by bringing families together to foster community, are fiercely loyal to British Columbia, and are fully dedicated to maintaining the high quality of our products.

Our Values

Genuine

We’re honest, truthful, and always above board both with our team and with our customers.

Respect

We care about being inclusive on many perspectives, ideas, stories, backgrounds, offerings, and learning from each other whenever possible.

Accountability

Actions speak louder than words, but we hold ourselves to both to get a job done.

Customer-Centric

The market might change, but we focus on being adaptable to provide value, understand and address needs, and actually listen to what our customers are saying to best help and support them.

Sustainability

We know the world can be better and we strive to also be a part of the many people making a difference in it ourselves and by focusing on supporting sustainable environmental organizations.

Our team

President and CEO

Taizan Komatsu

Sales Manager

Brian Hansford

Plant Manager
Operations Manager

Leo Nadeau

Warehouse Manager

Shelly Bruder

Brewmaster

Kelly Olson

We support sustainability across BC

Climate change is happening, but we’re not going to sit around and wait for the end. We’re taking on initiatives and supporting organizations that help protect and clean up the environment.

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