The latest worldwide beer collaboration is more than a fundraiser.
Breweries making Black is Beautiful beer also are asked to commit to the long-term work of equality.
In Lancaster County, four breweries signed up to make Black is Beautiful and join the cause.
The initiative comes from Weathered Souls, a Texas brewery whose head brewer and co-owner, Marcus Baskerville, is Black. The collab is an attempt to bring awareness to the injustices many people of color face daily.
“Our mission is to bridge the gap that’s been around for ages and provide a platform to show that the brewing community is an inclusive place for everyone of any color,” Baskerville says on the beer’s website.
Weathered Souls suggests brewing a stout, a dark beer, and shared the recipe for an imperial stout with a 10 percent ABV.
Participating breweries are asked to do three things.
- Donate all proceeds to local groups supporting police brutality reform and legal defenses for those who have been wronged.
- Donate to local organizations that support equality and inclusion.
- And, commit to the long-term work of equality.
Nearly 1,000 breweries signed up, including 36 in Pennsylvania and three in Lancaster County.
The brewing industry isn’t very inclusive, says Mike Simpson, one of the partners of Fetish Brewing Co. near Lititz. The brewery’s owners have been concerned about that for a while and have discussed what a tiny company can do to make a difference.
Signing up for the collaboration is a step in the right direction.
“It was very important to us to participate with the very, very limited means we have to support the serious work that organizations are doing to dismantle racism,” Simpson says.
The beer will be available soon on draft and in crowler cans at the brewery in the Rock Lititz complex.
Money raised will go to Roots of Justice, a nonprofit offering training on challenging systemic racism.
For the long-term work towards equality, the brewery may be small, but the owners can look things like hiring and partnerships, Simpson says.
Pour Man’s Brewing Co. in Ephrata made a different version of the beer.
The suggested beer is an imperial stout, which the team at Pour Man’s thought might not be popular in the summer, says co-owner Sam Son. They made a black IPA with 6.5 percent ABV.
Money from the beer sold at Pour Man’s will go to Lancaster YWCA, a group that’s had a positive role locally with racial equality, Son says.
Spring House Brewing Co. in Lancaster has released its version of the stout in cans and at the Hazel Street brewery.
Proceeds from Black is Beautiful beer sold at the brewery or through its local distributor, Kirchner Beverage, will go to NAACP of Lancaster County and Crispus Attucks Community Center. Starting on Juneteenth, June 19, the brewery’s donated a dollar for each pint sold at the Hazel Street brewery to both groups. That will continue on the 19th of every month, says Scott Richardson, Spring House’s sales and marketing director.
The brewery’s also asking wholesalers outside Lancaster County to pick a place to donate. For example, B. P. Lesky Distributing in Hagerstown, Md. Is donating profits to Doleman Black Heritage Museum in Hagerstown.
Iron Hill Brewery made a version of the beer that will be released Friday, Aug. 7, n 4-packs of cans at all Iron Hill locations, including Lancaster. Proceeds will be donated to The Urban League of Philadelphia.