BrewDog and Ricky Gervais raise profile of Queensland animal charity

BrewDog has teamed up with the Animal Welfare League Queensland to showcase dogs up for adoption in the region.

Street Dog beers will be available in 12packs of 330ml cans from today (22nd October) with eight different labels featuring dogs up for adoption.

The collaboration was prompted by a similar initiative following a social media post by comedian Ricky Gervais, in which he urged businesses to donate to charity rather than pay for celebrity endorsements.

BrewDog subsequently launched Street Dog in the UK to support British animal charities, which resulted in all of the dogs featured on the cans being rehomed.

“It’s not often that you get namechecked by a celebrity out of the blue, so it was a nice piece we were able to do, it was free advertising for us and we wanted to do something good with it,” said Calvin McDonald, head of Australian operations for BrewDog.

“It was a big success in the UK, and we got all the dogs from UK charities rehomed.

“Something I always say is that with Brewdog it’s easy to look in and say we have grand ideas about being a force for good and being a world-changing company, and maybe five years ago the rhetoric was bigger than the reality, but now we’re good at following through with things like that.

“Through this, we can raise some money for worthwhile charities and stick to being a worthwhile business instead of a capitalist nightmare.”

In Australia, BrewDog’s latest batch of Punk IPA – now brewed at its Brisbane brewery – has been renamed and will be sold under the Street Dog name until sold out, with 100 per cent of the profits from the sales of the beer going to the Animal Welfare League Queensland.

McDonald said that BrewDog was keen to work on projects that would be appropriate for the country the brewery operates in, and as a nation of dog-lovers, this was one initiative they felt worked in both countries.

“We want to look at campaigns from an Australian angle, what will work here. Australia is a dog-friendly country so it was a perfect opportunity for us to do a similar thing over here.

“We’re confident we’ll raise a lot of money and get the dogs adopted, but it’s also the awareness side of things.

“If we can help get the word out there we’ll do it, and 3,200 cans of Street Dog direct customers to the AWLQ website.

“It’s the start of a good relationship, back in the UK we have a charity Unicorn fund, where 10 per cent of our profit goes to charities. Over there we’ve worked with charities supporting equality and the interests of animals, so we want to build a network here in Queensland and Australia too, where we can help out in a charitable form because it’s really important to what we do.”

Founded in 1959, Animal Welfare League Queensland works with councils and the community to improve the outcomes for abandoned and homeless pets. Since its inception, AWLQ has rehomed more than 168,000 and saved thousands more through its community support programs.

Craig Montgomery, the spokesperson for Animal Welfare League Queensland, said that it was committed to changing the fates of thousands of healthy and treatable cats and dogs which are abandoned or killed unnecessarily each year in Australia.

“It is our promise to never euthanise a healthy, social or treatable animal in our care. BrewDog’s incredible support is helping to draw awareness to the thousands of animals that need rehoming”.

BrewDog has been working on its CSR credentials recently, becoming carbon neutral and getting employees to do the same as they search for more venues across Australia, with a focus on opening bars in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane by the end of 2021.

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