To date, the devastating wildfires sweeping through California have destroyed nearly 14,000 homes and caused what is estimated to be billions of dollars in damage. Camp Fire has already been declared the “deadliest and most destructive fire in California’s history.” At present, there are at least 85 confirmed casualties, with more than 150 people still missing.
Although Camp Fire has been contained, the road to recovery is going to be a long one. To help aid those impacted by the disaster, Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. has established the Sierra Nevada Camp Fire Relief Fund and seeded it with an initial $100,000. Donations have already started pouring into the effort, which will distribute funds among partner organizations that will help rebuild affected communities.
To help garner national support, the brewery announced the release of the Resilience Butte County Proud IPA on Giving Tuesday, November 27. All of the proceeds from sales will go towards the Camp Fire Relief Fund. Rather than make this a solo endeavor, Sierra Nevada reached out to brewers all over the nation asking them to brew the same beer from the same recipe. The California brewery is also offering to supply the raw ingredients for beer production and asking participating breweries to donate their sales from the beer as well.
“Many of us have personal ties to that region, so while we may be halfway across the country, we have a great deal of empathy for the people, businesses, and natural landscapes that have been affected,” says Jim Matt, former head brewer and current chief science officer of Rhinegeist. “Hopefully this collective of brewers can help make a small dent in the inevitably long process of regeneration.”
It’s a powerful thing to see that passion for good beer and bringing people together put into action across the country.”
Rhinegeist is just of one more than 1,000 breweries around the country that answered the call. Even Dovetail Brewery, which once declared, “We will never make an IPA” has happily gone back on its word in the name of a good cause. They’re not the first brewery to backpedal on that stance, but the gesture of support speaks to how high the stakes are. Homebrewers have been invited to join the ranks as well.
“We all wanted to help and Sierra Nevada provided an amazing way to gather our friends in the industry in a singular effort to do what we do best: brew beer and support our communities, wherever they may be,” Rob Day, director of new markets at Lord Hobo Brewing Company.
Brewers are already working as fast as they can to get the beer on the market and start bringing in aid. The Resilience Butte County Proud IPA is expected to hit taprooms and shelves around the country by late December.
“At the end of the day, we’re all part of a widespread craft beer family,” says Emily Parker-Lampe, head of brewing operations at Schlafly Beer. “It’s a powerful thing to see that passion for good beer and bringing people together put into action across the country. Schlafly is excited to be a part of helping the Sierra Nevada family in this extreme time of need.”