The next decade of Dog: BrewDog unveils ambitious Blueprint of pioneering plans to steer its business for the next 12 months BrewDog

what is brewdog

An ad that claimed the brewer’s fruit-flavored beers counted towards “one of your five a day” is pulled by the Advertising Standards Authority, which claims it is misleading. We… open six new bars across the UK, get into a global media storm after Diageo cheat us out of an award (true story), project ourselves naked onto the Houses of Parliament, make a special beer for the Olympics and launch the phenomenal Dead Pony Club. We move from our cobbled-together brewery in Fraserburgh to a state-of-the-art brewery in Ellon (where we are to this day). The banks finally stop giving us money… so we launch the ground-breaking Equity For Punks, offering people the chance to buy shares in our company.

It’s been one hell of a ride since we started brewing in co-founder Martin’s mum’s garage back in 2006. The promotion, which went live in 2021, offered people the chance to find a solid gold can hidden in cases. However, some winners questioned the worth of the cans and complained after discovering they were gold-plated. There is further division over the product launch, which BrewDog claims is intended to be a ”send-up of the lazy marketing efforts targeting the female market,” but that many feel is a lazy stunt perpetuating sexism and poor-taste irony. 8,000 people sign a petition against the brewer’s ’Don’t Make Us Do This… Equity for Punks’ funding ad, which is called out for being transphobic for featuring a skit of founders, James Watt and Martin Dickie, posing in drag in a red-light district setting.

what is brewdog

BrewDog launches a protest campaign at Russia’s ban on ‘homosexual propaganda’ ahead of the Winter Olympics with a new beer called Hello My Name is Vladimir. All BrewDog beers are brewed using the finest malted barley and hops from the best producers around the world. BrewDog boss James Watt has to pay out almost £500,000 to winners of the company’s “solid gold“ beer can promotion that was dubbed misleading by the ASA. The watchdog takes issue with the implication that an alcoholic drink held health benefits, since it suggested the product was a low-sugar and low-carbohydrate alternative. The ASA also says the phrase ’a little bit of alcohol’ misrepresented the product, which has 5% ABV – higher than some BrewDog ales.

Drinks industry watchdog intervenes

Equity for Punks V breaks the world record for equity crowd funding, closing at £22.6m. And we launch the BrewDog Blueprint – a manifesto for the future, laying out our focus on beer, quality and people; our mission laid out in black and white. BrewDog is a major investor in Crowns & Hops, a craft beer brand and brewery-in-planning that aims to be Inglewood, Calif.’s first black-owned brewery. BrewDog originally approached Crowns & Hops co-founders Beny Ashburn and Teo Hunter (formerly Dope & Dank) to be featured on their “Brew Dogs” show on Esquire. Ashburn and Hunter refused, but eventually appeared on the BrewDog Network. The banks are somehow persuaded to give James and Martin more money… which they use to mastermind the UK’s strongest ever beer, Tokyo.

BrewDog’s founders tapped Richard Kilcullen to be its brewmaster. He was head of sour production at Wicked Weed of Asheville, N.C. In addition to its breweries, BrewDog has upwards of 90 bars around the world. Watt says he “falsely thought“ the cans were made from solid gold having “misunderstood“ the process of how they were made. The campaign with Rizzle Kicks’s Jordan Stephens aims to encourage people to unbottle their feelings and open up about anxiety and depression, and coincides with the launch of its Sad AF beer. Staff at its Ellon brewery tell the BBC they were put under pressure in 2016 and 2017 to deliver the shipment, which resulted in a US-based importer saying they had been deceived by BrewDog.

Following accusations of perpetuating toxic corporate culture, it partners with the online movement #IAmWhole in a bid to spark conversations around mental health issues. The beer brand is found to be in breach of US federal law after it sent multiple shipments containing beer with ingredients that had not been legally approved. Learn how to pitch to our editors and get published on The Drum. The watchdog had been called in to examine the firm’s website, which reveled in the use of foul language – notably ‘motherfucker,’ ‘tits’ and ‘bastards’ – after one internet user challenged whether this was likely to cause offence. It quickly secures a deal with Tesco to stock several of its beers.

  1. The banks are somehow persuaded to give James and Martin more money… which they use to mastermind the UK’s strongest ever beer, Tokyo.
  2. Another BrewDog location is in the works in Brisbane, Australia.
  3. Each style has a typical alcohol content, but we also like to push the boundaries so expect the unexpected.
  4. The finest malted barley, high-quality hops from around the world, purified water and our own house yeast strains come together in harmony to create beer for all.

Built on being a ”post-punk, apocalyptic, motherfucker of a craft brewery,” intentional dissension has always been its dogma. In 2019, it announced plans to rebrand as BrewDog Distilling Company. When Watt teased possible label designs on Twitter, responses were so unkind, he scrapped the designs and deleted the tweets. In 2018, BrewDog debuted its first sour beer facility, BrewDog Overworks.

You can eat, drink, and sleep BrewDog.

In 2019 the ASA launches an investigation into BrewDog after a number of complaints about an ad for its non-alcoholic IPA – Punk AF – which reads ‘Sober as a Motherfu,’ cutting off two letters to eliminate but allude to the swear word. The brewer begins to stack up a number of disagreements with the Portman Group. In 2009 it is condemned as ‘grossly irresponsible’ for calling one of its products Speedball – the name given to the combination of heroin and crack cocaine. It will be the first of many pieces of criticism over its product names. Since its inception, BrewDog has been no stranger to controversy.

what is brewdog

In an open letter that was put out on Twitter, 61 former employees allege that the brand frequently cut corners on health and safety, espoused values it did not live by and created a “toxic” culture that left staff suffering from mental illness. Just one day after it is revealed, the UK’s advertising watchdog confirms to The Drum that it has received 14 complaints challenging whether it was likely to cause serious or widespread harm. The brand opens the doors to its first BrewDog pub, in Aberdeen. Despite criticisms, its Hardcore IPA wins Gold at the 2010 World Beer Cup in the Imperial IPA category. Our state-of-the-art Columbus brewery is a kingdom of steel and dreams.

Speedball was promptly banned by Portman[35] before being renamed as Dogma.[36] BrewDog has produced progressively stronger beers and has claimed to have made the ‘strongest beer ever brewed’ more than once. The brewer launches its vodka brand, Lone Wolf, and sparks allegations of bullying and hypocrisy from the brewing community after it emerges it threatened legal action against a pub in Birmingham that opened under the same name. We open The Doghouse right next to our Columbus brewery in Ohio, as well as our very own beer museum.

In 2019, BrewDog took over what would have been Stone Brewing in Berlin, Germany. Another BrewDog location is in the works in Brisbane, Australia. The only mix pack that will leave you buzzed on flavor, not alcohol. Crush our non-alcoholic headerliners, all conveniently within one pack. The brand lost its place on the B-corp list two years after joining the scheme, which offers certification of a company’s ethical commitment to the environment, community and staff.

It brews to extremes.

Equity for Punks Tomorrow raises an eye-watering £30.2m… oh, and we collaborate on beers with a Trappist brewery (yes, monks) and Parma Violets (yes, the sweets). A challenging year – for everyone – but we make some big strides. We become the world’s first carbon negative brewery, as we ensure sustainability is at the heart of everything we do. Our distillers pause on making spirits to produce hand sanitiser, donating over 500,000 bottles to the NHS and local key workers. And we of course produce some new beer, including the iconic Barnard Castle, and a collaboration exclusively for ALDI – ALD IPA. We launch Jack Hammer (you’re welcome) and double the size of our new brewery.

Why is BrewDog Controversial?

It positions itself as a brewery created by and for “punks,” from its “Equity for Punks” investor program to its flagship Punk IPA. It launched in Aberdeenshire, Scotland in 2007, and was founded by friends James Watt and Martin Dickie. Since then, BrewDog has expanded into a multinational company with nearly 100 locations, and more than 1,000 employees around the world. Hinting at what we can expect from the brand’s ’punk’ personality, it calls for the Portman Group – the long-reigning UK body that promotes sensible drinking – to be scrapped, saying it is impeding the development of small brewing companies. Our focus on planet comes to the fore, as we start work on our anaerobic digestion plant and launch BrewDog & Friends, the world’s most sustainable beer club. We announce plans for a Las Vegas brewery and our biggest ever venue, at London Waterloo.

We realized we had the power to banish the status quo that alcohol-free means taste-free. This inspired us to create full flavored non-alcoholic brews for those who are looking for an alternative to call their own. From alcohol-free lagers to imperial stouts, beer is not defined by its ABV.

Each style has a typical alcohol content, but we also like to push the boundaries so expect the unexpected. In 2017, Brewdog launched a “paw-ternity” leave program allowing employees a week of paid leave to start life with their new four-legged family member. Ten years later, it opened a second facility in Ellon, as well as its first U.S. brewery, in Columbus, Ohio.