Manchester-based brewery Cloudwater is terminating its contract with BrewDog, which had enabled it to get its craft beers into Tesco supermarkets.
The local brewery issued a formal statement addressing the ‘winding down’ of its partnership with BrewDog, which has been embroiled in a row about workplace culture.
In a Disclosure documentary that aired on the BBC earlier this week, BrewDog co-founder James Watt was accused of inappropriate behaviour by colleagues in the brand’s bars in the US – allegations that he says are ‘totally false’.
Cloudwater has now said that it has ‘reviewed the situation’ with its Beer With Big Ideas contract with the Scottish brewery, and will begin to cut its ties.
They have said on Twitter that they were ‘simply not aware of the extent of the problem’ but stressed that they ‘stand in solidarity’ with those in the beer industry who are fighting for the best possible working conditions.
Cloudwater’s termination of their contract with BrewDog will also mean they discontinue production of their Cloudwater Vs Brewdog New England IPA.
A statement shared on Monday states: “We’ve got an update for you all regarding our beers in Tesco.
“At the very start of last year, we entered into a contract with BrewDog to supply Tesco stores.
“When the contract was produced, the opportunities, outlook and the context for this agreement looked very different.
“Following a review of the situation, including consideration of alternative opportunities through grocery to support the breweries involved in the Beer With Big Ideas initiative, we have begun the process of winding down the contract with BrewDog early, and have notified Tesco of our decision.
“It will take time for both completion of remaining contractual negotiations and for long supply pipelines to clear.
“This is all we are able to say at the current moment. Thanks for your understanding.”
They later added on Twitter: “We simply were not aware of the extent of the problem and, as a human-centred employer that prioritises the wellbeing of its team above typical commercial goals, we stand in solidarity with people in the industry collectively striving for the best possible working conditions.
“In this regard, we can only aim to earn people’s trust through our actions. We’ll be trying our best to do just that.”
Another post from Cloudwater states: “We know a lot of folks will be disappointed to see the beers removed from Tesco shelves but we believe it’s the right decision for everyone.”
After The Truth About BrewDog aired on Monday evening, James Watt posted on Twitter: “The BBC published claims which are totally false & they published them despite the extensive evidence we provided to demonstrate that they were false.
“Reluctantly, I am now forced to take legal action against the BBC to protect my reputation.”
Allan Leighton, chairman of BrewDog, said: “Since the publication of the open letter in 2021, we have overseen a major independent review into our culture, which included reaching out to all signatories and all leavers over the past 12 months, and we have implemented a wide-ranging action plan to address the issues raised.
“To those former crew members for whom BrewDog failed to meet their expectations, we are sorry. To those who felt strongly enough about their experience to participate in the programme, we urge them to get in touch with our HR Team or use our independent ethics hotline so we can listen and act. Their feedback is hugely valuable.
“Any allegations of impropriety are taken extremely seriously. James has provided full assurance that the BBC’s claims are not accurate and are based on rumour and misinformation. Where a complaint was raised in the US, these were fully investigated by an external third party and found to be without substance.
“James has committed to making improvements to his management style and he will continue that development under my mentorship. He has expressed considerable regret if his manner has in any way made crew feel uncomfortable – that is clearly not his intention and goes specifically against the collaborative culture we want to build.
“Under James’s leadership, BrewDog has grown from a 2 part-time employee start-up to a global brewer with over 100 bars, 5 hotels, 2,400 employees, with plans for considerable growth in 2022, with the creation of over 1,000 new jobs this year.
“In addition, BrewDog has taken a true leadership position in terms of sustainability. We have an incredible future, but our overriding priority is making sure we are the best employer we can be and that our people feel safe, valued and fulfilled. We will continue to provide updates on our journey.”
The Manc has contacted BrewDog for comment.
Featured image: Cloudwater / BrewDog
The first bright yellow Bee Network bus has hit the streets of Greater Manchester
Greater Manchester residents will soon start to see bright yellow double decker buses travelling the region’s streets in the coming weeks.
With exactly six months to go before Greater Manchester “brings buses back under local control”, Mayor Andy Burnham has joined a number of other local leaders in unveiling the brand-new ‘Bee Network’ co-branded buses.
In what marks the biggest change to transport in Greater Manchester for almost 40 years, according to Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM), bus operator Diamond – which currently runs services in Bolton – has teamed up with Go North West to run the first franchised services in Wigan, Bolton, and parts of Salford and Bury from September this year.
Diamond has agreed to start transforming their buses into Bee Network ones from this week, with more set to appear on the roads every month.
The first bright yellow double decker bus has now hit the streets of Bolton, and is serving the number 8 route – which connects Bolton and Manchester city centre via Farnworth and Salford.
As already announced by TfGM and Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA), when franchising is officially introduced on 24 September 2023, 50 brand-new electric Bee Network buses will hit the streets on day one, alongside new ‘Euro VI’ vehicles, and dozens more co-branded buses from the existing fleet.
A further 50 electric buses will then be introduced onto the network in March 2024, which is when the second part of franchising starts.
All of the 270 new electric Bee Network buses will be fully accessible, with wheelchair bays, hearing induction loops, audio and visual announcement systems, and anti-slip flooring.
Mayor Andy Burnham said the first Bee Network bus entering service is “very much the start of our journey”, and added that the scheme will “ultimately deliver a greener, integrated and more inclusive transport system that will transform how people travel around our city-region.”
Transport Commissioner Vernon Everitt also called the first bus’s introduction onto the streets as “a further significant step” towards the integration of the Bee Network and the “transformation” of public transport and active travel in the region.
He continued: “From September we’ll also have dozens of new state-of-the-art buses serving passengers in Wigan, Bolton, and parts of Salford and Bury.
“These will be the first of many across Greater Manchester that will, alongside the new lower fares – which are already increasing ridership – and improvements to travel information, improve bus travel for everyone who lives and works here.”
Featured Image – TfGM
Stockport teacher filmed ‘throwing student to the floor’ after being kicked out of his lesson
A teacher at a school in Stockport appears to have been recorded throwing a student to the floor after kicking the child out of his lesson.
In the clip that began circulating on social media last week, a pupil from Harrytown Catholic High School can be seen being escorted out of a classroom by a teacher whose identity is yet to be released.
After an inaudible conversation takes place in the doorway as the student presumably tries to remain in the room, the teacher can then be seen grabbing the young student and pushing him out of the doorway.
Following a slight struggle, the teacher then seemingly pushes the child again, at which point he appears to fall to the ground and the video cuts out. The caption reads: “This is how teachers at Harrytown Stockport treat their pupils. Justice for Oliver”.
At this stage, it still remains unclear whether Oliver (whose age is yet to be confirmed) was intentionally thrown to the floor or simply fell following the momentum from the push.
Either way, it doesn’t look good and obviously hasn’t gone down well with students or their guardians
Harrytown is a secondary school in the Stockport village of Romiley, teaching children aged from 11-16, and was awarded ‘Good’ by Ofsted in its most recent rating. However, many parents now have found themselves in the comments slamming the institution.
One mother claimed that “a teacher pushed my child in that school, they denied it [and] my kids been out of school since”, with another alleging that “the girl that videoed it got excluded for 5 days”, adding that they went on to send it to Manchester Evening News.
Speaking of the MEN, as per a statement issued to the outlet, Interim Director of Children’s Services and Director of Education for Stockport Tim Bowman said: “We are aware of an incident that took place at the school and we are following all appropriate due processes. We cannot comment further at this time.”
As for the school itself, they also insist that they are aware of the video and are now investigating the situation but cannot provide any further information either.
Oliver’s family are also yet to issue any form of comment following the incident.