Black-Owned Breweries Across America

In the vast landscape of the industry in America, there is a notable lack of diversity when it comes to ownership. Less than 1% of the nearly 8,500 craft breweries in the country are Black-owned. This underrepresentation is a stark reminder of the systemic barriers that exist for minority entrepreneurs in the world.

However, there are shining examples of Black-owned breweries that have emerged, breaking through these barriers and making their mark on the industry. One such brewery is Peoples Brewing Company, located in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Founded by Theodore Mack, Henry Crosby, and their cohorts, Peoples Brewing Company holds the distinction of being one of the country's first African-American breweries.

Milwaukee has long been considered the capital of America, so it is fitting that a trailblazing brewery like Peoples Brewing Company was born there. This brewery not only produces exceptional craft beers but also serves as a symbol of empowerment and representation in an industry that has historically lacked diversity.

Another Black-owned brewery making waves in the craft beer scene is Black . Originally based in Australia, Black Hops recently expanded its reach to the United States by acquiring Semi Pro Brewing in East Brisbane. The acquisition allowed Black Hops to establish a presence in Brisbane and strengthen its ties to the local brewing community.

Black Hops has always had a close relationship with the Semi-Pro crew, with Mick Guy, the owner, founder, and brewer, remaining as the Brisbane Site Head Brewer for Black Hops. Co-owners Siena Perry and Shaun Stubley also continue to be involved in the brewery's operations. This collaboration showcases the power of partnerships and the importance of supporting local businesses within the brewing industry.

The emergence of Black-owned breweries like Peoples Brewing Company and Black Hops is not only a testament to the talent and resilience of their founders but also a step towards a more inclusive and diverse craft beer industry. These breweries serve as beacons of inspiration for aspiring entrepreneurs from underrepresented communities, showing them that they too can make their mark in the brewing world.

It is crucial to recognize and support Black-owned breweries and other minority-owned businesses in order to create a more equitable and inclusive industry. By celebrating their achievements and amplifying their voices, we can help pave the way for a future where diversity and representation are the norm rather than the exception.

The presence of Black-owned breweries is a significant step towards a more inclusive craft beer industry. While the underrepresentation of minority-owned businesses persists, the success and impact of breweries like Peoples Brewing Company and Black Hops highlight the possibilities and potential for change. As consumers, we can play a role in supporting and uplifting these breweries, ensuring that diversity and inclusivity become integral parts of the brewing landscape.

How Many Black-owned Breweries Are There In The US?

According to recent data, out of the approximately 8,500 craft breweries in the United States, less than 1% are Black-owned. This means that there are only a handful of breweries in the country that are owned by individuals from the Black community. This underrepresentation highlights a significant disparity in the brewing industry, where diversity and inclusion are lacking.

To put this into perspective, here are a few key points:

1. Total number of craft breweries in the US: Currently, there are around 8,500 craft breweries operating in America. Craft breweries are known for producing small batches of beer using traditional methods, often with a focus on quality and distinct flavors.

2. Percentage of Black-owned breweries: Unfortunately, the number of Black-owned breweries is extremely low, with less than 1% of the total craft breweries in the US being owned by Black individuals or groups.

3. Lack of diversity in the brewing industry: The disparity in Black ownership within the brewing industry highlights a broader issue of underrepresentation and lack of diversity. This is an area where efforts to promote inclusivity and provide opportunities for marginalized communities are needed.

4. Implications and potential for change: The low number of Black-owned breweries indicates the need for increased support and resources to promote diversity within the industry. By encouraging and empowering Black entrepreneurs in the brewing sector, it is possible to create more inclusive and representative spaces.

The brewing industry in the United States remains largely dominated by non-Black ownership. However, recognizing the existing disparities and taking proactive steps towards promoting diversity and inclusion can lead to a more equitable and vibrant craft beer community.

black owned breweries

What Was The First Black-owned Brewery In America?

The first Black-owned brewery in America was founded in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. The brewery was established by Theodore Mack, Henry Crosby, and their associates. This brewery holds significant historical importance as it represents the first African-American-owned brewery in the country. The founders, Mack and Crosby, made a significant contribution to the brewing industry by establishing their own business in the heart of America's beer capital.

The brewery's location in Milwaukee is significant as the city has a rich brewing history and is often referred to as the beer capital of the United States. With a long-standing tradition of beer production, it is fitting that the first African-American-owned brewery would emerge in this city.

Theodore Mack, Henry Crosby, and their cohorts played a pivotal role in breaking barriers and paving the way for future Black entrepreneurs in the brewing industry. Their success in establishing the first Black-owned brewery in America is a testament to their vision, determination, and entrepreneurial spirit.

It is important to note that African Americans have a long history in the brewing industry, despite facing significant obstacles and discrimination. The establishment of the first Black-owned brewery in America represents a milestone in the ongoing struggle for equal opportunities and representation in the brewing industry.

The first Black-owned brewery in America was founded in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, by Theodore Mack, Henry Crosby, and their associates. This historic achievement showcases the resilience and entrepreneurial spirit of African Americans in the brewing industry and serves as an inspiration for future generations of Black brewers and entrepreneurs.

Who Owns Black Hops Brewery?

Black Hops brewery is owned by three individuals: Dan Norris, Eddie Oldfield, and Michael “Govs” McGovern. Dan Norris is a well-known entrepreneur and author who co-founded Black Hops in 2014. Eddie Oldfield is an experienced brewer who has been brewing beer for over 20 years and joined Black Hops as a co-owner in 2015. Michael “Govs” McGovern is a former Australian army helicopter pilot who joined Black Hops as a co-owner in 2016. Together, these three individuals oversee the operations and growth of Black Hops brewery.

Who Owns Black Bottle Brewery?

Black Bottle Brewery is owned by Sean Nook. Sean Nook serves as both the brewer and the owner of the brewery. He is responsible for overseeing all aspects of the business, from brewing the beer to managing the operations. As the owner, Sean Nook is the driving force behind the brewery's vision and direction. He is passionate about creating high-quality craft beers and providing a unique and enjoyable experience for customers. With his expertise in brewing and his dedication to the craft beer industry, Sean Nook has successfully established Black Bottle Brewery as a popular and well-respected establishment in the community.


The craft beer industry in America has seen significant growth in recent years, with thousands of breweries popping up across the country. However, it is disheartening to note that less than 1% of these breweries are Black-owned. This lack of representation highlights the need for greater diversity and inclusion within the industry.

Black-owned breweries like Peoples in Milwaukee and Black Hops in Brisbane are breaking barriers and making their mark in the craft beer world. These breweries serve as shining examples of entrepreneurship and passion, demonstrating that people of all backgrounds can excel in the brewing business.

By supporting and promoting black-owned breweries, we not only encourage diversity within the industry but also celebrate the unique perspectives and flavors they bring to the table. It is crucial for consumers, beer enthusiasts, and industry professionals alike to recognize and uplift these breweries, giving them the recognition and support they deserve.

Furthermore, it is essential for the craft beer community as a whole to actively work towards creating a more inclusive and diverse space. This can be done by providing mentorship opportunities, fostering collaboration among breweries, and advocating for equal representation in industry events and competitions.

The success and growth of black-owned breweries should be celebrated and supported. By embracing diversity and promoting inclusivity, we can create a stronger, more vibrant craft beer industry that truly reflects the rich tapestry of American society.

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Thomas Ashford

Thomas Ashford is a highly educated brewer with years of experience in the industry. He has a Bachelor Degree in Chemistry and a Master Degree in Brewing Science. He is also BJCP Certified Beer Judge. Tom has worked hard to become one of the most experienced brewers in the industry. He has experience monitoring brewhouse and cellaring operations, coordinating brewhouse projects, and optimizing brewery operations for maximum efficiency. He is also familiar mixology and an experienced sommelier. Tom is an expert organizer of beer festivals, wine tastings, and brewery tours.