Demand for local beer is on the rise in Wollongong, with Bulli Brewing Company to become the second brewery to open its doors in the past year.

For the past 10 years, Illawarra Brewing Co. was the stand-alone brewery in the region, only recently being joined by Five Barrel Brewing in December.

Five Barrel Brewing director Phil O’Shea said the increased market for craft beer in Wollongong inspired him to leave his finance job in Sydney to pursue a career in brewing.

“We are seeing a big trend away from the macro beers and big mass-produced beers which are essentially very similar,” Mr O’Shea said.

“People are drinking less but of a better quality, so they’re happy to spend more on a beer that they’ll actually enjoy.”

Despite the competition growing, Five Barrel Brewing and Illawarra Brewing Co. welcome interest in the industry.