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shutterstock_214369990For most of us, Decem­ber rep­res­ents the end of a long year; a time to look back at what we accom­plished and what we missed out on, and then to look for­ward to what we should do in the fol­low­ing year. Look­ing back at the year in beer, I thought I’d make a Christ­mas wish list for 2015.

It’s been a big year for brew­ers, for fest­ivals and for beer drink­ers. We’ve been spoilt. Every month new brew­er­ies, new bars and hun­dreds of new beers are pop­ping up. We have dis­trib­ut­ors bring­ing in beers from all over the world, and the world’s brew­ers are com­ing to town and mak­ing col­lab­or­at­ive brews. The fest­ivals are get­ting big­ger and bet­ter, and the smal­ler events — beer launches, one-off parties, tap take-overs — are get­ting more fre­quent and incred­ibly popular.

And so my wish is for exten­ded good for­tune to the New Zea­l­and beer community.

I know that sounds gen­er­ic­ally phil­an­throp­ic, and it may also seem unne­ces­sary as many brew­ers around the coun­try have been doing well. Every time a report is put out about beer sales, both in New Zea­l­and and inter­na­tion­ally, the trend is a decrease in over­all beer sales but an increase in the ‘craft’ sec­tion of that mar­ket. The num­ber of ded­ic­ated beer bars in Wel­ling­ton has almost reached sat­ur­a­tion point (some might say we’ve passed that point).

Beer is doing well here in the Craft Beer Cap­it­al, and there is more good com­ing in the future.

The Pink Boots Soci­ety is doing ster­ling work in New Zea­l­and sup­port­ing women in the beer industry. More women drink­ing and mak­ing beer can only be a good thing. Bury­ing the image of ‘girly beers’, the ridicu­lous advert­ising tac­tics and cas­u­al sex­ism of par­tic­u­lar brew­er­ies, needs to hap­pen next year.

If you want to sup­port this, and you do because you are a great per­son, then there’s a lot of things you can do. Buy the Pink Boots beers when they show up at your loc­al bar; let brew­er­ies, brew­ers and bar own­ers know when they have crossed the line into sex­ism; sup­port ini­ti­at­ives like the Who Are You? cam­paign run by the Safer Bars Alliance.

You can also buy the char­ity New Zea­l­and Beer Cal­en­dar, cur­rently being sold via The cal­en­dar is rais­ing money for Rape Crisis Wel­ling­ton, and it shows that every­one in the beer com­munity is behind this cause. And that’s the cool thing about a com­munity: it looks after every­one in it.

So go and enjoy your sum­mer, sit and drink beer in the sun­shine (respons­ibly), and let’s hope for an even bet­ter year in 2015.