Breweries making Good Beer are pioneers of local manufacturing, using traditional and creative brewing and fermenting methods to redefine consumer expectations for craftsmanship with their beers. These brewers aim to reshape supply chains and promote responsibility by sourcing ingredients locally and grown without synthetic inputs when possible, practicing resource conservation and supporting local communities.
The Good Food Awards rely on the expertise of the beer community to create the tasting, determine judges and set standards for the category. Read on to learn who has been integral to building the category, as well as what the beer standard are and who will be judging this year.
Sean Lilly Wilson
CEO (Chief Executive Optimist) at Fullsteam Brewery
Sean Lilly Wilson is founder and Chief Executive Optimist of Fullsteam, a Durham, N.C.-based “plow-to-pint” brewery and tavern. Fullsteam’s mission is to pioneer a Southern Beer Economy through the act of commerce, fostering economic opportunity for farmers, foragers, and agricultural entrepreneurs in a post-tobacco North Carolina. Sean led the “Pop The Cap” effort in North Carolina to modernize the state’s beer laws, helping to usher in a new era in craft beer for the state. Sean is a four-time James Beard semi-finalist in the Outstanding Wine, Spirits, and Beer Producer category and, in 2022, received a Lifetime Achievement award from the N.C. Craft Brewers Guild. He currently serves on the board of the Triangle Land Conservancy.
Co-founder & President, Big Spoon Roasters
Co-Founder and CEO, Free Range Brewing
Managing Editor/Podcast Host, Good Beer Hunting
Owner, Lady Edison Pork
Executive Maltster, Epiphany Craft Malt
Dr. J Jackson-Beckham
Founder and Principal, Crafted For All
In order to be eligible for a Good Food Award, beer entries must meet the following standards:
- Certified organic, or meet at least four of the following eligibility criteria:
- Made with at least one ingredient (besides water and yeast) sourced within 150 miles. Malt will be considered “local” if sourced from a local malter.
- Made with at least one ingredient (besides water) that is grown without the use of synthetic inputs, including herbicides, pesticides, fungicides or fertilizers.
- Made by a brewery that has made concrete water recycling or other resource efficiency improvements in the production or delivery process in the last three years.
- Made by a brewery that engages deeply with its community by participating in a sustainably-minded guild; offering paid time off for employees to volunteer for causes they believe in; or otherwise offers substantial support to its community.
- Made by a brewery that prioritizes resource or consumer packing waste reduction through programs, such as mash repurposing, growler programs and container-related sustainability measures.
- Made by a brewery that proudly maintains one or more third-party accreditations embodying social responsibility and transparency.*
- In addition, all Beer entries must meet the following criteria:
- Made in the USA or US territories.
- Made by a crafter that is an upstanding member of the good food community, committed to equity and inclusion in all levels of their business,** as exemplified through integrating these practices:
- Creating a safe and healthy work environment where employees receive a fair wage, are safe and respected at work and have access to the resources they need to keep themselves healthy.
- Offering a diversity, equity, and inclusion training to staff members and/or leadership annually.
- Thoughtfully acknowledging the heritage of culturally-specific food on websites, packaging and/or marketing materials.
- For the small percentage of Good Food community that operates on a significantly larger scale, meeting additional criteria related to board diversity, maternity leave and employment practices.**
*Such as 1% for the Planet, B Corp, GMO-Free Project, Fair Trade or other local organizations focused on environmental and social responsibility.
**Check if you are in the 2% of companies meeting the Good Food Foundation definition of large scale, and review the addition criteria on the Rules & Regulations page.