The largest and one of the oldest craft breweries in New Jersey has declared bankruptcy.

Flying Fish Brewery Declares Bankruptcy

Somerdale, Camden County-based Flying Fish Brewery has filed for bankruptcy protection just months after a deal fell through that would have seen the brand sold to a rival New Jersey brewery.

The bankruptcy filing comes after a 23% drop in revenue. In 2023, Flying Fish’s gross revenue totaled about $3.1 million, down from its 2022 total of nearly $4 million.

What Happened to Cape May Brewing Co's Deal to Buy Flying Fish Brewery?

It was announced in April that Cape May Brewing Company was purchasing Flying Fish Brewing Company.

By June, however, the deal was dead. Cape May Brewing president Frank Stempin told the Press of Atlantic City that the company backed away from the deal “after extensive analysis during the diligence phase.”

To Whom Does Flying Fish Brewery Owe Money?

Flying Fish Brewery is owned by Elk Lake Capital, a capital investment firm in Scranton, PA. that acquired Flying Fish in 2016.

Elk Lake Capital is also listed in the bankruptcy filing as Flying Fish’s biggest creditor, with unsecured claims of about $4.2 million.

Flying Fish owns $4.1 million to another financial services company, and, in all, has about $1.3 million in assets and more than $9.2 million in liabilities, according to the Philadelphia Business Journal.

It's not known how the bankruptcy filing will impact the future of Flying Fish Brewery.

The Legacy of Flying Fish Brewery

Flying Fish was established in 1995 as the world's first virtual microbrewery, according to Wikipedia, before opening as a brick-and-mortar operation in Cherry Hill in 1996. The company expanded and moved to Somerdale in 2012.

Flying Fish's beer has been widely available in South Jersey and the Philadelphia region for over 20 years. The brewery has won multiple national awards in its history.

Flying Fish Brewery garnered some attention after Hurricane Sandy in 2013 when they crafted a new beer called "Forever Unloved Sandy", with proceeds going to the restoration of storm-damaged New Jersey.

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