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Two and a half century of brewing tradition. The Dojlidy Brewery is 250 years old

At the very beginning, it was a brewery producing beer for a local tavern. Nowadays, it is the biggest brewery on the brewing map of the Podlasie region. Owned by Kompania Piwowarska, the Dojlidy Brewery celebrates its 250th anniversary together with the residents of the region. It will open the door to the world of brewing, inviting 250 people for a birthday brewery tour.

On September 1, the residents of the region will be able to take a close look at the brewing process. – On the occasion of the 250th anniversary of our brewery we will hand out 250 free entry passes. The lucky recipients will be greeted by our brewers, who will tell the story of the brewery and explain how one Poles’ favourite beers, Żubr, is being brewed. It will also be a unique opportunity to talk to the employees who have been involved with the brewery even for a few generations – says Jacek Winiarski, director of the Dojlidy Brewery. The invitations will be possible to get via local press and radio. The guests will be the first ones to see the new face of the brewery as the Żubr brand team is currently working on its rebranding.

A big history of a small brewery

The brewery located in the Dojlidy district was established in 1768 on the initiative of the grand crown hetman Jan Klemens Branicki. Initially, it was a small brewery producing beer for a local tavern. It is the only one of numerous breweries in Białystok that operates till this day and its long history involves a lot of distinguished names – after the Branicki hetman, it was run by other local property owners: the Radziwiłłs, the Lubomirskis and the Rüdigers. At the beginning of the 20th century, the brewery was forced to take a break. Even though the buildings survived World War I, in 1915 Russians stole the whole equipment. It took a decade for the brewery to reappear on Poland’s brewing map, but it returned in grand style. By the end of 1920s it was seventh in the country considering production and the beer brewed there was sold in 40 locations across the Eastern Borderlands of Poland, including Grodno, Brześć and Wilno. Its taste was also enjoyed by the residents of Warsaw. Consumed by fire in 1944, the brewery in Dojlidy did not survive World War II. Production of beer was resumed in 1954 and the brewery has been operating uninterruptedly until today.

The birthplace of Żubr

The Dojlidy Brewery was taken over by Kompania Piwowarska in 2003 and the ownership change brought funds for the development and modernization. The brewery in Białystok got a new bottling line, a brew house, cellars and a warehouse for finished products. Thanks to the investments, the production capacity almost tripled over the period of four years. Today, the Dojlidy Brewery produces about 2.2 m hl of beer per year. – To help those who might have problems imagining that amount, it is about 440 m bottles – says Jacek Winiarski. Initially popular only among regional beer lovers, the brewery’s flagship Żubr became number one on the Polish beer market and Kompania Piwowarska’s second biggest export brand.

A brewery that remembers its roots

Associated with the city of Białystok and the region of Podlasie for over two centuries, the Dojlidy Brewery does not forget about its roots. Not only does it provide work for local residents, but also supports them in other ways. – We have been receiving a lot of support and sympathy from the inhabitants of the region, therefore we do our best to give them more than just their favourite beer – says Jacek Winiarski. The brewery regularly supports local cultural and sports initiatives. Moreover, the employees get engaged in activities aimed at protection of the environment. Thanks to their efforts, 3,000 trees were planted in the Knyszyn Forest, while the Żubr brand has been providing financial support for the Białowieża National Park to protect the local bison.