Published Date

February 19, 2021 - Vancouver, BC - The BC Craft Brewers Guild kicked off their annual event, BC Beer Con, kicked virtually earlier this month with a thought-provoking keynote from Ren Navarro of Beer. Diversity.


Navarro discussed cultivating diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) in the craft beer industry, and what it meant for brands to truly incorporate DEI values in their workplace culture. Diversity, equity, and inclusion training has been a hot button issue for many industries, and the craft beer industry has also seen its share of incidents of racism and discrimination. In addition to Navarro’s keynote, an interactive two-part workshop was presented by Jalapeno Employee Engagement, challenging attendees to ask what it takes to make not only make high-quality beer, but also to create a lasting impact on the brewing industry by leveraging diversity and inclusion for higher performance and engagement in their businesses.


“We saw the importance of opening the floor to this kind of conversation with BC’s brewers and Ren is a well-respected individual in the craft beer community,” said Ken Beattie, Executive Director of the BC Craft Brewers Guild. “Having Ren kick off the conference was a great way to get the conversation started, and that was just the beginning. We knew we had to show the community at large we were serious about implementing DEI training, tools, and resources. What better way to do that than by donating half of our ticket sales to exactly this cause?”

To that end, the BC Craft Brewers Guild decided to donate half of ticket sale proceeds, totalling $5750, to the recently formed Inclusion and Anti-Discrimination Committee, headed by the Canadian Craft Brewers Association (CCBA). The committee aims to eliminate discrimination in the craft beer industry, to increase representation of marginalized groups in craft beer, and most importantly, to use craft beer’s popularity as a catalyst to improve inclusivity across Canada.


“We thank the BC Craft Brewers Guild for their donation and their support,” said Rick Dalmazzi, Executive Director of the Canadian Craft Brewers Association. “We launched the committee to combat discrimination and foster an environment of inclusivity and diversity in the craft beer industry across Canada. These funds will help with the development of tools and resources for all craft brewery members to engage in DEI training.”


“The CCBA is committed to supporting its members in diversifying their workforces,” said Chloe Smith, co-owner and General Manager of Townsite Brewing, member of the Board of Directors of the BC Craft Brewers Guild and CCBA Inclusion and Anti-Discrimination committee member. “Our committee will provide member breweries with the required resources to facilitate change in their workplace, and we will gather data to measure the success of those efforts. The BC Craft Brewers Guild put on an engaging and thought-provoking conference this year, the proceeds of which are much appreciated and will be put to good use. Three cheers for change!”


To learn more about BC Craft Brewers Guild, please visit and to learn more about Canadian Craft Brewers Association’s Inclusion and Anti-Discrimination initiative, please click here.