Ales By Mail issued a mission statement on Monday 19th March promising to never sell beers with sexist labelling after senior staff were “shocked and disappointed” by a panel debate on discrimination at last week’s BeerX in Manchester.
“This week we attended the SIBA Beer-X event, including a debate on sexism in the beer industry that left us shocked and disappointed,” said a statement on Ales by Mail’s website.
“You will notice as you navigate the website that we do not stock any beers that have sexist or inappropriate labelling, or any products that use imagery or language that are disparaging or exploitative of women or that we find unsupportive of equality and diversity.”
“Sadly we have now found it necessary to make an explicit statement of this long term policy, as our silence on this matter doesn’t convey our support of all the women at every level of our industry that are made to feel excluded or uncomfortable by the use and justification of these images, and fails to demonstrate our distaste at those in our industry who continue to use them.”
“Ales By Mail and its associated businesses do not and will never purchase any beer which fails to meet our standards of equality and diversity, and will not support brewers who do use such imagery and language.”
Both SIBA and The Campaign for Real Ale (CAMRA) have faced criticism in recent months for not proactively discouraging their members from using sexist names, labels and marketing for their own beers.
In response, SIBA announced last month that it would hold a debate on sexism at its annual trade show, but many attendees, including panel guest Jaega Wise, criticised the event for its lukewarm attendance and the attitudes of some audience members.
“Can honestly say I’m disappointed,” said Jaega Wise, SIBA director and head brewer at London-based craft brewery Wild Card.
“I’m surprised by some of the opinions of some in 2018. We have a long way to go on the road to equality in beer.”
Craft beer marketing expert Steph Shuttleworth shared a photo of the audience at the start of the debate to highlight the lack of attendees.