How come we’re not surprised by these findings?
Here’s the deal…
The US craft beer industry is predominantly run by white men, according to new owner demographic benchmarking data from the Boulder, Colorado-based trade organization the Brewers Association (BA).
This is hardly surprising news for anyone who has attended the Craft Brewers Conference where women and people of color, although growing, remain a distinct minority.
The BA survey of 500 randomly selected breweries (only 136 of them responded) found that brewery owners in the US are 93.5% white, with 92.2% of breweries having entirely white ownership.
Additionally, only 23.7% of brewery owners were female, while 75.6% were male and just 0.2% were non-binary/third gender.
“The American beverage alcohol consumer is increasingly BIPOC (Black, Indigenous and People of Color) and female. That shift is ongoing and will likely continue going forward. For example, female drinkers under 25 now outnumber male drinkers under 25,” said Bart Watson, chief economist for the Brewers Association.
“So for craft to continue growing and moving more in the larger beer and beverage alcohol consumer market, it will need to connect better with that diverse customer base.”
“While there’s nothing that says white and male owned businesses can’t connect with that more diverse customer base, it’s going to require additional work in building diverse organizations and shoring up blind spots,” said Watson. “The BA is working to build those resources,”
“Our industry has to see the value and want to use them,” Watson added. “These results should underline why they are needed.”