Updated: Sep 14, 2020
Jessica Infante Jun. 3, 2020 at 3:43 PM
Within 24 hours of announcing the Black is Beautiful collaboration beer on Monday, Weathered Souls Brewing co-founder and head brewer Marcus J. Baskerville heard from nearly 100 craft breweries who wanted to participate.
“We’ve had a decent amount of reception,” Baskerville told Brewbound on Tuesday. “We’ve had some pretty big names already reach out to us that want to participate.”
Black is Beautiful is a collaborative initiative spearheaded by the San Antonio, Texas-based craft brewery “to bring awareness to the injustices that many people of color face daily,” according to the brewery’s website.
Participating breweries can sign up on the Black is Beautiful online portal. They are asked to brew Black is Beautiful, an imperial stout, use the same label design and donate proceeds to organizations in their communities that support police brutality reform or legal defense funds.
Baskerville said he was inspired to brew Black is Beautiful after protests against police brutality spread across the country after the May 25 killing of George Floyd, a black man who was suffocated by now-fired Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin, who pressed his knee into Floyd’s neck for nearly nine minutes.
On Wednesday, Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison raised the charges against Chauvin to second-degree murder and charges are also expected against three other officers for their roles in the incident.
“I was trying to think of a way to give my support as a black business owner,” Baskerville said. “As a black brewer, how could I show my support for the current situation that’s going on without jeopardizing my business in any type of way, but also not jeopardizing myself as a black man either?”
Baskerville didn’t join the protest in San Antonio, but he wanted to contribute to the movement in another way.
“We ask that you please stand with us to create something that has never been seen before and show the world the brewing community is one of a kind,” the website said.