The results of Societe Brewing Company’s 2016 Holiday Food Drive are in and the Kearny Mesa brewery is proud to announce that the total donations raised for the Jacobs & Cushman San Diego Food Bank was 23,153 pounds. That equates to more than 11½ tons of canned meats, soups, fruits, vegetables and beans; dry cereal, macaroni & cheese, spaghetti, peanut butter, powdered milk and infant formula, all of which will provide 19,294 meals to families in need throughout San Diego. It is an unprecedented level of success for this drive, which Societe has held annually since 2013. That year the brewery raised 263 pounds of food—just over one percent of 2016’s total. The dramatic increase in donations is the result of active, concerted efforts by the Societe team to encourage its patrons to donate and reward them for doing so in a variety of meaningful ways, including the following:

  • The Urchin Wine Barrel-Aged Cranberry Ale: Societe is well known for its variety of “Feral” (wine barrel-aged) ales. When one is released, fans typically flock to the brewery to purchase bottles of these limited-edition beers, which are available exclusively at Societe’s tasting room. Released as part of the food drive, The Urchin went on sale for $50 per 500ml bottle. All previous Feral beers sold for $20/bottle, making this extraordinarily pricey, BUT anyone who donated 50 pounds of food was allowed to purchase a bottle of The Urchin for just $5. Customers responded immediately and in large numbers. 323 bottles of The Urchin were purchased, equating to at least 16,150 pounds of donations from this promotion alone.
  • Discounted Beer for a Day: As in years past, anyone who brought in a donation of any quantity received $1 off every beer purchased on the day of their donation.
  • Permanent Price Decreases: Once the donation total surpassed 15,000 pounds, Societe’s management decided to go one step further to get past the 20,000-pound mark, announcing to fans that if that goal was reached, the company would lower the price of its Feral beers from $20/bottle to $18/bottle. Not for a day, or a week, or a month…permanently. This incentive did the trick and, within less than a week, the goal was reached and prices for all present and future Feral beers were reduced to $18.

“Our patrons have always given big during our Holiday Food Drive, but they were so generous this year that we felt compelled to be generous right back,” says Lorah Smith, Societe’s Director of Charitable Giving. “They have made such a positive, lasting impact for so many local families that it feels good to do something positive and lasting for them, too.”

“Making quality beer that people enjoy and appreciate has been the driving force in my career,” says Societe Co-founder and Brewmaster Travis Smith. “It is uniquely rewarding and incredibly fulfilling to see the beer we work so hard on help us give back to the community in such a large-scale, meaningful way. We are floored and humbled by the response we received from our fans, and happy to reciprocate with this token of our appreciation.”

Societe has a vast variety of Feral beers set for release in 2017, with several new releases slated to debut in the first quarter alone. To stay updated with information on these beers and their releases, beer fans are encouraged to sign up for Societe’s Infrequent Intelligencer email newsletter, and follow the brewery on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram (@SocieteBrewing).


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