Rise of Chinese middle class fuels interest in craft beers

FILE - In this Thursday, Oct. 15, 2015, photo, a restaurant worker sits on crates of beer outside a convenience store as he uses his smartphone in Bei

FILE - In this Thursday, Oct. 15, 2015, photo, a restaurant worker sits on crates of beer outside a convenience store as he uses his smartphone in Bei

SHANGHAI (AP) — Hundreds of craft beer enthusiasts, investors and brewers are attending an exhibition in Shanghai dedicated to expanding the palette of Chinese consumers and promoting sales of high-end brews.

Local brewers from across China and the world are at the 2018 Craft Beer of China Exhibition to share tips on latest technology and sales trends as beer consumption grows in China beyond legacy brews to more experimental, refined, and expensive flavors.

Craft beer is far from upstaging local beer behemoths like Tsingtao and Yanjing in the $28 billion national beer market, but it is quickly growing with craft breweries opening up in major and smaller cities across China.

Exhibition organizer Darren Guo says as China's middle class grows, so too does its tastes for finer products.