MBAA Brewery Award of Excellence

Brewery Award of Excellence in Community Involvement

Kona Brewing Company - Makana Series

Kona Brewing was selected as the winner for the 2016 award for their efforts within their Makana Series launched in 2015. Within this series of beers a portion of the profits are used to support a local nonprofit organization that is focused on and committed to preserving Hawaii’s natural resources. With Kona employee participation, the efforts of the brewery are recognized within this award. The award will be presented at the 2017 Master Brewers Annual Conference in Atlanta, Georgia, October 12-14, 2017.  

Runner-Up: Widmer Brothers Brewing

Portland, OR, for their efforst within the Oregon Brewshed Alliance, a project focused on responsible water usage within a coalition of brewers, craft brewing affiliates, and conservationists.

About the Award

The MBAA Brewery Award of Excellence recognizes outstanding achievements by a single brewery in the area of community 
involvement. Breweries that have a strong history of giving back to their communities dating back to 2013 are eligible to apply for the award.
The purpose of the MBAA Brewery Award of Excellence is to promote the profession of brewing and to be the source for brewer's to network and improve their craft. Through this award program, Master Brewers will be able to promote the contributions that breweries make to better our industry, community, and environment.
The scope of this award program is to deliver the MBAA Brewery Award of Excellence and provide national public relations media for the breweries who best service and support their communities.
The award is open to breweries of all sizes. The community involvement award recognizes a single manufacturing site (not a group or chain of sites) and is based on a single project (not a series of projects) at an existing site. Projects submitted from past winners and honorable mentions are not eligible. 

2016 Award Criteria

Community Involvement projects will be judged on:

  1. Brewery Employee Involvement. This criteria relates to the depth of involvement from all brewery employees. For example,  does the passion for the community involvement program involve all brewery walks of life, from seasonal employees to upper management, or is it usually organized by one  group in the brewery. Breweries that have employees that demonstrate a hands-on aspect towards the project will score higher in this criteria. Example: a brewery whose employees volunteer to build a playground at the local shelter.
  2. Benefit to the local community. Does the community involvement  benefit one group, a number of groups  or individuals in the community? 
  3. Innovative / Unique approach: The applicant is to provide a unique and resourceful approach the community involvement activity. The applicant should describe why the approach was innovative to ensure the most objectivity in scoring.
  4. How is the activity viewed by the community? Does the media willingly get behind it? If it is an ongoing program, does the community look forward to it every year? Include any awards or acknowledgments or testimonials that the brewery was given for the community involvement project.
  5. Home run stories, how about the community involvement story that knocks it out of the park.

How to Apply

Complete the MBAA Brewery Award of Excellence application form and include a summary (maximum of 1,000 words) of a project that propelled the individual brewery to excel in the category of community involvement.

Application submission for the 2016 award is closed. Keep an eye out for how to apply for the next award in 2018!

Selection Process

The applications are judged blind by qualified brewery professionals against the set of criteria noted above. The rubric is calibrated amongst the judges and calculated. The application that scores the highest will be the winner. The winning submission may require further editing for publication.


The winner will receive:

  • Two complimentary annual conference registrations to the Master Brewers Annual Conference
  • $3,000 honorarium
  • Plaque of recognition
  • Recognition at the Master Brewers Annual Conference and announcement in The Master Brewers Communicator and website. 
  • Winning application will be published in the Technical Quarterly journal and announced through media public relation outlets. 

Previous Awardees

2015 Brewery Award of Excellence in Sustainability​

Matt Phillips, Phillips Brewing Company
Victoria, Canada, for their CO2 Reclamation System project.

1st Runner Up:
Widmer Brothers Brewing
Portland, Oregon, for their HVAC Optimization project.

2nd Runner Up:
Red Hook Brewing Company
Portsmouth, New Hampshire, for their Green Energy Powered EV Station.

2014 Brewery Award of Excellence in Sustainability​

​​Brasil Kirin Indústria de Bebidas S/A
Brazil, for their Cleaning in Place (CIP) project.

1st Runner Up:
Craft Brew Alliance
Portland, Oregon, for their Microbial Fuel Cell Pilot Project.

2nd Runner Up:
Steam Whistle Brewing
Toronto, Canada, for their Optimization of Brewery Waste Management Program.