The famously white-male dominated craft beer industry is facing growing calls for change from within, as women and people of color in the field share stories of sexism, racism and harassment they have faced while on the job. In for Jim Braude on Greater Boston, Adam Reilly was joined by Maureen Fabry, co-owner and head brewer of CraftRoots Brewing in Milford, and Dani Babineau, CEO and co-founder of Redemption Rock Brewing Co. in Worcester.
“We are having a bit of a reckoning — in an industry that has been working really hard to be inclusive and creative,” Fabry said. “But I do think that it’s time that we take a closer look at what it’s been really happening,”
Bringing on investors is one key area where prejudice can create roadblocks in the craft beer world. When Babineau was trying to get her brewery off the ground, she said, she stopped bringing male co-founders to meetings because investors would continually address questions to them. They would also frequently ask her who had designed her business plan (she did) and decline to fund the business despite praising their model.
“We had to raise a significant amount of money, and we definitely had a harder time doing that having a female face of the brewery,” Babineau said. “I’ve talked to men who’ve opened breweries, who took them a long time to get funded. And they were talking six to eight months, where, for us, we were talking three years.”
WATCH: Craft brewers talk sexism and racism in the industry