5 Reasons Breweries Should Avoid QuickBooks

Quickbooks for Breweries
Let’s be honest here. We don’t have a problem with QuickBooks. It’s an excellent tool for small businesses and it works well if you’re regularly processing purchases, invoices, sales, and payroll.

However, if you’re a production company, like a brewery or a beverage manufacturer, you might want to take a closer look at the pros and cons of utilizing a software that is not specialized for breweries and beverage manufacturers.

Here are 5 reasons why using QuickBooks is not a great long-term solution:

  1. Not designed for breweries
  2. QuickBooks is not built for traceability
  3. GAAP compliance is on the user
  4. Reporting capabilities are limited
  5. All systems are not connected

1.) Not Designed for Breweries

QuickBooks was not designed to handle the complexes inherent to production.  Batch manufacturing, variance production, or anything involving a multi-process bill of materials (BOM) are all foreign concepts when it comes to integrating with QuickBooks because it is built to be accounting software.

If your operations are small and there’s no interest in growing or properly accounting for losses during production, then maybe this sort of integration isn’t for you. We get it. Yet without the clarity, real time reporting, and batch management capabilities of OrchestratedBeer, efficient business operations will become difficult as your brewery grows.

2.) QuickBooks is Not Built for Traceability

QuickBooks was built to handle accounting functions, but not built to trace costs and variances during production. And it certainly can’t be integrated with your inventory or provide greater insight beyond what it was built to do, handle your financials.

Brewery management software, on the other hand, enables you to trace all your costs during production such as your variances or Costs of Goods Sold (COGS). Not to mention the ability to handle TTB reporting, backtrace batches, track ingredients and packaging. Why create extra work in trying to sync two separate systems when you can process them all in one place?

3.) GAAP Compliance is on the Individual in QuickBooks

Generally Accepted Accounting Principles, or GAAP, are standards, conventions, and rules that accountants follow in order to record and prepare financial statements. Where QuickBooks comes up short is in it’s ability to manipulate data to hide embezzlement and deceptive accounting practices. And while QuickBooks has built-in measures to prevent the issuance of fraudulent company checks, these registries can be purged so there’s no paper trail.

On the other hand, software on the SAP Business One platform is built to be GAAP compliant, so that everything done in the system leaves a paper trail. It’s built to restrict the deletion and purging of financial documentation. So while no one ever wants to get audited, it’s safeguards like this that will protect you in such instances.

4.) Reporting Capabilities Are Limited

Like QuickBooks, brewing software has built in reports, so you can definitely extract the information you’re looking for. The real difference lies within how helpful the reports really are, simply because integrated software can generate financials that detail production tracking as well.

Sure, you can generate reports with a lot of financial details with QuickBooks, yet with an all-in-one solution, you can see how efficient your production is: if you have any variances, the Cost of Goods Sold in relation to production costs, the evolving costs of your recipes Bill of Materials, and so much more.

5.) All Systems are Not Connected

When working with an external accounting software, you’re losing out on the ability to keep track of everything in real time. If you’re tracking your brewing operations on one system, then entering all your financial data on another, the results don’t always sync up after the fact. And if you’re handling each of these processes in different departments, then it’s even harder for each person to know what’s happening.

Conversely, with automated brewing software, all of your financial information resides in the same place, linking everything with associated costs. Having this kind of insight provides owners and production managers an immediate snapshot of your costs in relation to production. This sort of automation saves everyone time and the frustration that comes with separate systems.


QuickBooks is just not specialized to fit all the needs of breweries and beverage manufacturers. And especially for larger breweries, being able to track everything in real time, from production to sales, is a huge advantage.

Discover how Implementing all-in-one brewing software can empower your brewery to make the best business decisions by downloading our brochure. We want to ensure you have a single source of the truth to help you make better decisions for your brewery.