that when she actually worked it out on paper, the cost isn’t that much more to produce organic beer. It’s more about priorities. “Everything had to be top notch in our practices and procedures. So it’s always been part of me and who I am.” Of course, with all the new breweries opening up in Van- couver all searching for that unique space in the craft beer market, the question becomes “What makes this brewery different?” Claire says it was the right thing to do to fit into Vancouver’s emerging organic culture. “It’s part of our model. Vancouver has such a strong and vibrant organic food movement. It’s something that people are looking for. So we are really happy to be able to provide organic beer as part of the movement.” And Claire isn’t worried about other breweries jumping on the organic bandwagon. In fact, she encourages it. “It has always been our opinion that we want other breweries to make organic beer. It would help our supply chain and the cost of the ingredients and organic products. It’s something we encourage. And Brian and Rebecca at Crannog wrote up an information sheet for people on how to brew just one organic beer.” Dogwood takes the “back-to- the-farm” philosophy one step further. Their beer is acceptable for vegan diets. Claire explains what steps are necessary to ensure people follow- ing a vegan diet can enjoy Dogwood products. “Our beer is malted barley, water and hops, pretty much, which are plants, and yeast. Most breweries, especially craft brewer- ies and real ale breweries, use ‘finings’ to help clarify their
products. These finings typically are made from elongat- ed fish bladders. It’s used in the winemaking and brewing industries quite heavily. It surprises people. Vegetarians certainly don’t like finding out that there are fish products in their beer.
So that’s part of the transparency that we were committed to from the beginning.
To be zero waste. No unusual ingredients in our beer. It is what it says it is.”
Naturally, to every rule, there’s an exception. One of Dog- wood’s most popular beers, their ‘Organic Honey’ is, strictly speaking, not vegan, as it is made from natural honey. But the remainder of their selection is not only vegan, it’s as environmentally friendly as you are going to get within the industry. Dogwood’s commitment to sustainability is well-researched and taken very seriously. “We have decided to go for the six-pack cans, and we put the six-packs in
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