Sexism in the beer industry will be the hot topic when a debate is staged during the trade day of the Manchester Beer Festival (January 24).

“Sexism is bad for business. What are we going to do about it?” aims to address the ongoing issues and challenges of sexism in the beer industry and determine what practical steps can be taken to address it.

It follows hot on the heels of the festival’s decision to filter out beers with sexist names or discriminatory images and the Campaign for Real Ale (CAMRA) publicly condemning sexism and discrimination in the industry.

Graham Donning, CAMRA’s regional director for Manchester, said: “Sexism has been a hot topic across many sectors recently. But, even within our festival, we have seen outdated attitudes persisting over several years, despite our efforts. It’s led to us deciding passive solutions weren’t working and it was time to take positive action.

Preview: Manchester Beer and Cider Festival

“It’s clearly a deep-seated problem within the beer industry of which we are only a small cog. More action is needed and our trade session provides an opportunity for industry professionals and volunteers alike to come together to take us beyond talk. We want to see some practical and realistic ideas on how we can all eradicate sexist attitudes in beer as soon as possible.”

Master beer trainer, Christine Cryne, will lead the debate, with panellists comprising: Jaega Wise, head brewer at Wild Card Brewery, who has recently made headlines for her comments on sexist beer labelling; Annabel Smith, beer sommelier and founder of Dea Latis, an organisation that aims to bring beer to more women; Barry Shaw, operations manager for Beerhouse’s pub chain; Jennifer Smith, co-owner and founder of Brewsmith Beer; and Katie Wiles, CAMRA’s senior communications manager and beer blogger.

The trade session will kick off the Manchester Beer Festival and will take place between 5pm and 9pm on January 24. It is open to the press and members of the trade, as well as CAMRA members. The sexism debate will take place between 6.30pm and 7.30pm.

The festival will open to the general public from the January 25-27 — tickets are available at