Brewers are only 7.5% Female, but it didn’t start out that way…
Here’s the deal…
People have been brewing beer in America since colonial times, well before titans like Adolph Coors, Frederick Miller, John Molson and Jacob Leinenkugel became beer industry legends. And more times than not those brewers were women, who often built small brewing outfits inside their kitchens as their villages took hold.
This Fourth of July, Miller Lite is paying homage to those women, and one in particular: Mary Lisle, the first documented female brewer in America.
To celebrate her, and indirectly all of history’s overlooked female brewers, Miller Lite is turning out a limited run of its iconic white can to honor Lisle, and the innumerable so-called “ale wives” who came before her.
The limited-edition cans replace “Miller Lite” with “Mary Lisle,” and will update its trademark to read “There’s no beer without women.”
The limited edition cans also include an etching of Lisle and some words about the history of women in American brewing, a history that has not gotten its due for way too long.
Lisle’s father died in 1734 and left her the Edinburgh Brewhouse in Philadelphia which she operated until 1751 making her America’s first recognized woman brewer. But Mary’s legacy was soon lost to history as beer became a massive industry largely dominated by men.
“Women have been written out of brewing history in America, and we want to remind people during the biggest beer-drinking weekend of the year that without women, there’s no beer,” says Kelsey Ott, associate marketing manager for Miller Lite,” told Beer & Beyond. “Mary Lisle is the first documented brewer in American history, but it took 100 years to record her name. There were countless women who came before her and played an incredibly important role in brewing beer in America.”
And as part of this worthy celebration Miller Lite is also, donating $5 from every case sold during the holiday weekend on Instacart and Drizly to the Pink Boots Society, which supports women working in the brewing profession.
The limited-edition cans will be showcased at an event on June 30 in Philadelphia, where attendees can learn more about Mary Lisle’s contributions to brewing history.
“Although there has been immense progress, Miller Lite believes there is still a lot to be made,” Ott added. “We’re proud to help bring Mary Lisle’s story to more people this Fourth of July.”
Major H/T to Beer & Beyond who we liberally leaned on for this piece.
(All image credits: Miller Lite)