Posted on: December 2, 2022, 12:58h.
Last updated on: December 2, 2022, 01:07h.
On the eve of opening its 30,000-square-foot rooftop bar on the Las Vegas Strip, Scotland-based BrewDog has lost its ethical B Corp certification.
The status – signifying a company’s ethical commitment to the environment, community, and staff – was allegedly stripped after a BBC documentary and open letter from workers savaged the beer company, according to a report in Britain’s The Guardian.
“BrewDog is no longer a Certified B Corp,” a spokesperson for B Lab, the certifying entity, told the British news organization. “B Lab does not comment on companies that are no longer in the B Corp community. I’m afraid I cannot share any further information.”
Opening on Schedule
A certification of ethical compliance is hardly a liquor license on the scale of things required to open a Las Vegas Strip brewery. So BrewDog will debut, as originally announced, at the Showcase Mall (the one with the giant Coke bottle) on Friday, Dec. 2.
The 30,000-square-foot pub will feature an onsite brewery with 10-barrel brewing system, an event space, a retro game zone, and full-size shuffleboard tables. According to vegas.eater.com, BrewDog incurred $2.65 million in construction costs alone.
The documentary, Disclosure: The Truth About Brewdog, investigated working conditions at the company and accused its founders of instilling a “culture of fear” among employees. It ran on the BBC on Jan. 24, 2022. Afterward, BrewDog issued a statement accusing it of presenting “numerous factual inaccuracies about BrewDog” that “the broadcaster failed to properly put to the company before transmission.”
The open letter was published on the web on June 9, 2021. Containing similar allegations, it was signed by hundreds of purported former employees. James Watt, the company’s cofounder and chief executive, responded to the letter at the time by apologizing on Twitter. He stated that the brewery was focused “not on contradicting or contesting the details of [the] letter, but to listen, learn, and act.”
BrewDog earned its ethical B Corp certificate two years ago. At the time, Watt tweeted his pride at joining a “global community of businesses that meet the highest standards of verified social & environmental performance to help build a better world.”
BrewDog issued a statement claiming that it was company’s own decision to “step aside from our B Corp certification for the time being.”
BrewDog – which has opened more than 100 bars in the past five years – is known for its provocative claims and business moves. In 2010, it produced 12 bottles of a beer called “The End of History.” Consisting of 55% alcohol by volume, it was the world’s strongest beer at the time – a title that has since been usurped. In 2018, BrewDog introduced Pink IPA, a limited edition bottling of its Punk IPA coinciding with International Women’s Day. The bottle’s label featured the slogan “Beer for Girls,” igniting a backlash which, two years later, Watt called “justified.”