Central Distributors was founded in 1934 by Albert J. Barriault. During this time, popular brands of beer and ale were distributed to some 300 retailers in seven counties. Fern J. Barriault joined his father in the business in 1946 after completing his service in the Navy. Fern accepted the title of president in 1954 after the passing of his father.
Fern was joined in the business by his two sons; Ronald and Dennis in the early 1970s. After learning and performing all aspects of the operation, Ron assumed management of wine sales and Dennis took on management of beer and non-alcohol sales. At the time, wine and non-alcohol were relatively new business segments for Central Distributors and both contributed to making Central a leading beverage distributor in Maine.
In addition to growth through increased sales and territory expansion, Central has capitalized on its business strengths through select acquisitions. In 1980, Central successfully purchased State Distributors of Auburn and Knox Distributors of Rockland. In the early 2000s Central also expanded its wine portfolio through transactions with both Valley and Federal Distributors.
A 4th generation of the Barriault family now participates in company operations. Renee joined the company in 2002 and now has a focus in beer sales operations. Michael joined the company in 2003 as operations manager and now serves as president. Amy joined the company in 2007 in wine sales and now serves as wine sales manager.
Today, Central has great strengths as a statewide distributor in Maine, including Cumberland/York counties, the Augusta/Waterville area, and most recently an expansion into the Bangor market. Aroostook/Washington counties are serviced by Central and partnerships with local distributors. Central proudly serves more than 2,000 customers state-wide and employs over 100 Maine people.
Did you know that Central Distributors was presented the Spirit of the Androscoggin Award in 2008 from the United Way of Androscoggin County?Learn More