The Craft Maltsters Guild began taking action on our Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) initiative during the summer of 2021, partnering with Crafted For All to develop a mission statement and plan to support more diversity, equity, and inclusivity in the craft malting industry at large. From the start, these efforts have been led by a board-appointed DEI task force featuring a mix of both board members and general members. What follows is a review of the work this group has focused on over the past year.
Put simply, it has been a busy and productive 2022! The year started with the approval of the Guild’s Code of Conduct for all members and the launch of our first scholarship program. Scholarships included a one-year individual membership to the Guild and free attendance at the virtual Craft Malt Conference held in February 2022. Recipients included Maany Ramanan, a Ph.D. candidate at the University of California Davis; Jessi Flynn, cofounder of Kweza Craft Brewery in Rwanda; and Jen Ireland, a brewer’s assistant in California.
Now accepting applications for our 2023 Craft Malt Con scholarships!
It is clear our members have the desire to implement more diverse and inclusive practices in their businesses and places of work, however, they cannot always find the tools to get started. To assist in this process, the task force assembled a collection of resources and examples from across a range of businesses and associations in the agriculture and craft beverage spaces. We hope you find it helpful. Also, feel free to email [email protected] if you have suggestions for other resources we should add to the list.
The balance of the DEI task force’s work in 2022 was focused on the Crafted for All commitment made by our Guild in 2020. Led by Dr. J Jackson-Beckham, the mission of Crafted For All is to help develop more inclusive and equitable practices in the craft beverage community. More information about the organization, as well as the specific action items the Guild is committed to addressing, can be found here.
The Guild has made meaningful progress since 2020 in service to a number of these action items and acknowledges the need to prioritize further action in the years to come. To this end, the task force completed a detailed assessment of our Guild’s organizational practices, assigning a priority score, and ranking our own performance against the 22 action items outlined in the Crafted for All commitment. This exercise gave our group clarity about which areas of the organization are in need of attention at this time. We were also able to spend time thinking about what areas we need to be aware of as our organization grows.
Three action items rose to the top of our list:
- “Establish safe channels for employee (or more specifically in our case, member) contributions and feedback and ensure that all voices can be heard.”
- “Ensure that marketing, advertising, packaging, and all customer contact methods do not perpetuate stereotypes, appropriate cultures, or dehumanize any population or group.”
- “Regularly “take the temperature” of the organization’s culture with a cultural climate audit or another tool for assessing employee experience and use the results to drive future policy.”
As a result, the Board of Directors and Guild working groups are currently crafting new policies to collect complaints and address behavior that is in violation of the Guild’s Code of Conduct. The goal is to have these policies in place and the associated tools available to members in the first quarter of 2023. We are also working on an advertising policy to ensure that Guild supporters are in line with the values of our organization.
Lastly, applications are now being accepted for the 2023 Craft Malt Conference scholarship program. We will award two in-person scholarships and three virtual scholarships for the 2023 Craft Malt Conference being held in Portland, ME on March 16-18. Learn more and submit your application here.