AB InBev Plans Scholarship to Promote Black Employees in Brewing

Anheuser-Busch InBev SA is taking a series of measures aimed at diversifying the brewing industry including a scholarship that aims to increase the number of Black workers in its ranks.

In partnership with the United Negro College Fund, Anheuser-Busch, the North American subsidiary of AB InBev, will award 25 grants annually over five years to science, technology, engineering, and mathematics majors, the company said in a statement. The UNCF Budweiser Natalie Johnson Scholarship is named after the first Black female brewmaster at the company’s St. Louis brewery.

Companies are stepping up their efforts to address racial and economic injustice in the wake of the protests following the recent killings of Black Americans such as George Floyd and Breonna Taylor. In the U.S., the brewing industry has remained overwhelmingly dominated by White workers, especially in the craft beer segment that’s driving growth.

Nine in 10 brewers at the country’s more than 8,000 independent breweries are White, according to a survey completed last year by the Brewers Association.

AB InBev’s scholarships are valued at $4,000 each. Five scholars who receive a paid internship at the company’s brewing and supply division in the U.S., the unit in which Johnson works, will also receive a $6,000 scholarship toward the final year of their degree.

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