They just don’t get it: the fight against sexist beer rages on

By Nikkie Sutton

- Last updated on GMT

Just wrong: sexist beer marketing is unnecessary
Just wrong: sexist beer marketing is unnecessary

Related tags Sexual harassment

The battle against sexist beer marketing revved up yesterday after Wild Card head brewer Jaega Wise's call for a ban on non-PC beers at competitions brought the ugly truth to a head on social media.

Wise urged the industry to ban beers featuring sexist imagery on their pump clips or labels from beer festival competitions organised by the Campaign for Real Ale​ (CAMRA).

Licensees and beer aficionados took to social media to voice their opinions on the comments. Beer writer Melissa Cole hit back at users who didn’t agree with banning sexist pump clips and said: “The ‘don’t buy it, get a life, Generation Snowflake’ brigade will be out in force because, quite simply, it doesn’t affect them and therefore they have zero empathy and even less desire to address why they don’t care.

“It’s not them who will be abused because they are working behind a bar, in a low-paid but much-needed job, and being forced to serve a product that will open the door to them being harassed for selling something they have no choice over the purchase of – this kind of thing is rife in the industry.

“I don’t know a single woman who has worked in a pub/bar/restaurant who doesn’t have a horror story along these lines.”

Sexual harassment

She quoted figures from the Trade Union Congress’ (TUC) Sexual Harassment Report 2016 ​that revealed some 67% of women in hospitality and leisure reported experiencing some form of sexual harassment.

Cole added: “And it’s not just hearsay, on average one in five women face sexual harassment in the workplace – do you know what that statistic jumps to in the leisure and hospitality industry (according to recent TUC figures)? 67%. Don’t tell me that ‘fun’ or ‘bawdy’ or (excuse me while I do a little sick in my mouth) ‘bants’ pump clips and labelling aren’t part of the problem. I’ve worked behind bars and I communicate with women every damn day about the fact that they open the doors to customers, and even colleagues, making unacceptable comments or even advances.”

She also questioned how much of a difference it would make to drinkers if the pump clips weren’t available before concluding that the men who were “whining and bitching” on social media should accept that sexism would no longer be tolerated.


However, some users did not agree with Cole’s comments and one replied: “Stick to studying ya [sic] dictionary. It’s no problem.

“People are dying on the streets from the cold. There’s ya [sic] story with a bigger concern.”

Another user commented: “Just don’t buy it if it offends your sensibilities.”

However, other users were quick to defend Cole’s stance and one said: “She makes some brilliant points.”

Another said: “Great comment, nailed it! That 67% number is shocking.”

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