Do You Care What’s Happening in B.C.?
CAMRA was founded originally as a consumer advocacy organization. The mother ship, CAMRA UK, fought the giant brewing concerns over the crushing of local breweries and small brewpubs: the ‘locals’ that preserved the British standards of true ales through the centuries.
In BC, sadly, the mass extinction of regional independent breweries still exists in living memory. Then John Mitchell and Paul Hadfield started working their way through the maze of provincial liquor statutes dating back to the days of prohibition in order to re-establish a viable, independent craft brewing industry.
Since then many craft brewers have tried and many have fallen by the wayside. It is an industry, after all, and the rules of competition give advantages to the biggest players in the field. The bottom line, not the best ingredients, are what frequently determine the ultimate victor in many showdowns between the smaller craft brewer and the deep pockets of multinational corporate beer.
The past few years have seen the demise of many familiar faces on the craft brewing and brewpub scene. Tall Ship Brewing was ruined in a legal battle over the design of the ship on its label. Other breweries have become what are called Ghosts – the label appears on bottles but the beer inside is brewed by another company in a different location using a different recipe.
What CAMRA BC means in all this:
CAMRA BC is a great society in which to meet people, learn about beer and enjoy its consumption. Local branches host frequent events in which to meet other craft beer enthusiasts. Being a member of CAMRA BC means being an educated consumer, knowing your rights and refusing to be sold a counterfeit product.
Here’s the Pitch:
Join CAMRA and help support Real Beer in B.C.! With over 1300 members throughout the province we can rightfully claim to be representative of all discerning B.C. beer drinkers. We care about beer. We want to see a vibrant craft brewing industry flourish in Canada. We want British Columbia to be the leader in that arena.
Check out the Branches page to see which branch is closest to you. Live in Williams Lake or Nanaimo and think you’re up to the task of organizing a local branch? Then get over to the contact page and send the executive a note. You will be glad you did.
In the meantime, staying educated and active is the best way to keep the industry honest and, most importantly, to keep real ale on tap at a reasonable price.