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Beer, Eat and Drink

Black Is Beautiful Is Now On Tap in Colorado

Twenty-seven local breweries are participating in the worldwide initiative to fund causes to support police brutality reform, relevant legal defenses, and equality and inclusion programs.

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In response to the global protests calling for justice for the deaths of Black people at the hands of police, the American brewery industry answered with what it does best: brewing beer for the cause. Established by Weathered Souls Brewing Company in San Antonio, Texas, the Black is Beautiful beer initiative is a collaborative effort within the brewing community to bring awareness to injustices that people of color face in this country. Participation requires breweries to donate all sales of a Black Is Beautiful-branded stout to local causes that support police reform, relevant legal defenses, or equality and inclusion programs. Weathered Souls supplies the recipe for the base stout and encourages breweries to add their own creative spins.

Over 1,000 breweries representing all 50 states, plus 20 international breweries, pledged to participate—including 27 of Colorado’s best. “It is the least we could do in bringing awareness to an issue that needs to be talked about,” says Chantel Columna, co-owner of  Novel Strand Brewing Company, which is donating the proceeds from its Queen City Coffee-infused Black is Beautiful imperial stout to Colorado Black Women for Political Action.

But beyond just clinking glasses and calling it a job well done, the most important ask of the Black is Beautiful program is for breweries to “commit to the long-term work of equality.” Because let’s face it—allyship needs to extend beyond a single black square on Instagram or brewing a new beer.

Marcus Baskerville, founder of the initiative and owner of Weathered Souls, understands the limitations of the campaign but believes that this is a move in the right direction. In a statement on the Black is Beautiful website he explains, “I contemplate how the country can move forward, how we as the people, can create change, and what it will take for everyone to move forward with a common respect for one another. For us, we feel that this is our contribution to a step. Sometimes that’s all it takes for change.”

For Columna, part of the answer lies with incorporating BIPOC voices into the larger conversation. “At the end of the day, change begins with ourselves. Even just in our own community in our own space; allow space for education, inclusion, and representation. Make sure that we are being included in the conversations, not just the ones about race, but everything,” she says.

Local breweries participating in the Black is Beautiful initiative:

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