Partnering with non-profit organizations and community involvement have always been a part of New Belgium. In 1995 when the philanthropy program was conceived, we began donating $1 for every barrel of beer sold to non-profit organizations in the communities where we sell our beers. This effort spurred the establishment of a philanthropy committee that, to this day, remains the backbone of the program. This inter-departmental group, open to all interested coworkers, researches, reviews and grants funding to many worthy organizations doing important work across our areas of distribution. Since its inception, New Belgium Brewing has donated more than $5 million through our grant programs and in 2012 co-workers donated over 3000 hours of volunteer time to their community.

Vision in Action


New Belgium supports organizations who offer wide ranging Youth Environmental Education programs, and one of our most recent partnerships was with Eco-Cycle in Boulder, CO.  Our grant targeted the Green Stars School Program. This first-in-the-nation program addresses every aspect of a school’s waste stream.  Students, school staff, and families adopt Zero Waste practices which encompasses waste reduction, composting, and recycling to keep 2/3 of their trash out of the landfill.  This comprehensive program is the only one in the nation in which students learn to recycle and compost waste from ALL areas of the school including cafeterias, classrooms, bathrooms and offices.  Currently, the program is impacting more than 11,000 students, ages 3-14, and more than 1,600 school staff in 29 Boulder County public schools.

Eco-Cycle’s diverse communications, education and outreach programs encourage recycling and composting, promote waste reduction, and advance our community’s progress toward Zero Waste. Eco-Cycle’s school environmental education programs improve environmental awareness, foster stewardship and make Zero Waste a part of daily school life.  Way to go Eco-Cycle!

City Slicker Farms

At New Belgium we like to collaBEERate.  We believe collaboration reinforces democratic values and builds better communities through sharing, innovation and creativity.  When our NorCal NBB pedalin pixie Jen, who volunteers with City Slicker Farms, recommended our cross-departmental philanthropy committee check ‘em out we did just that and almost immediately feel in love.  Turns out City Slicker Farms loves to collaborate as much as we do!!  They saw an urban food desert in West Oakland, a community where access to affordable, fresh, healthy food was hard to come by and decided to do something about it.  In 2011 City Slicker Farms supported over 2,000 West Oakland community members in growing and harvesting 34,000 pounds of food.

Since their inception in 2001 City Slicker Farms has transformed the lives of thousands in West Oakland.  They’ve collaborated with schools, governmental agencies, and local businesses to turn an abandoned concrete industrial desert into an edible green oasis providing sustenance, service learning, a sense of civic pride and overall a more connected, healthier, community through their expertly managed programs!!   By advocating for policies that foster health and empowerment, by providing training and educational opportunities, and by cultivating underutilized, blighted urban spaces turning them into places of civic pride, City Slicker Farms transforms broken food systems as well as their community.

City Slicker Farms' mission is to empower West Oakland community members to meet their basic need for fresh, healthy food by creating sustainable, high-yield urban farms and backyard gardens. Envisioning a healthy West Oakland where everyone has reliable access to fresh, healthy foods and to the knowledge and resources to grow it.

To learn more about City Slicker Farms’ awesome scope of work, check them out at:










2012 Grants Summary

2012 Currently Supported Organizations

Organizations Supported

Grant Program and Application

The purpose of New Belgium’s Environmental Stewardship Grants Program is to serve and connect with the communities where we sell our beers. We want to cultivate relationships and support those making an impact. Our goal is to improve the health of the planet and inspire others to joyously embrace sustainable choices. In 2013 we will donate $760,00 to programs in 30 states.

*Youth Environmental Education

We believe environmental stewards draw inspiration from their earliest experiences in the outdoors. At New Belgium Brewing Company we are reminded every day that we are a part of the natural world because producing world-class beers depends on the health of the environment.

As environmental stewards we are enthusiastic about programs that foster connectivity between humans and nature. We aim to discover programs that engage youth from a variety of backgrounds in the outdoors and prepare them to make knowledgeable choices about the environment. New Belgium is devoted to honoring nature at every turn of the business, and we are privileged to support programs that share our commitment. Let’s go outside!

We are in support of Youth Environmental Education (grades K-12) projects that:

  • Bring youth closer to nature
  • Apply an interdisciplinary approach
  • Foster a deepened sense of place
  • Explore natural and cultural history
  • Experientially engage students in the outdoors
  • Build a comprehensive curriculum tied to national and state learning standards

*Sustainable Agriculture

Beer is an agricultural product, born from nutritious soil, water, and hard-working hands. New Belgium Brewing purchases barley, hops, and various spices primarily from the United States and Canada, as well as a very small amount from abroad. Our business depends on these high quality, affordable, and reliable ingredients to make the delicious beer we all enjoy. Because of this, we value a vibrant and complete ecosystem to support our livelihoods and great beer for many generations to come.

Agriculture accounts for the majority of water consumed by human-based activity on the planet, and it emits significant greenhouse gas emissions. Through our charitable contributions and work with our suppliers, we hope to do our part in encouraging agriculture to become more sustainable and even regenerative.

We are in support of Sustainable Agriculture projects that:

  • Build and maintain healthy and resilient soil
  • Protect and conserve clean and abundant water
  • Create a healthy working environment for farmers, their families, their communities and the wildlife with which they share their land
  • Help young farmers overcome barriers to entering this profession
  • Build collaborative relationships between farmers and suppliers
  • Promote urban farming in low income areas or food deserts

*Water Conservation & Restoration

The communities in which we (will) brew our beer are intrinsically bound to great American rivers: the Cache la Poudre in Fort Collins, CO and the French Broad River in Asheville, NC. Access to clean water is a (threatened) basic human right, and the effects of climate change exacerbate the aridity of the West. Since water makes up over 90% of our beer, we approach our role as stewards of these rivers sincerely. We aim to take only what we need and return any excess water as clean as we got it. This means reducing our water consumption wherever we can and avoiding the use of toxic cleaning agents or anything else that might compromise the purity of the water as it leaves our facility.

Of course, we can do everything within our power to reduce the quantity and increase the quality of the water we use, but that alone won’t preserve and rebuild the country’s many threatened rivers. We are a small splash in a giant pond, and we want to make our splash ripple. Because of this, we started Save the Colorado which donates over $150,000 a year to organizations working to research and repair the Colorado River.

We are in support of Water Conservation and Restoration projects that:

  • Support public policy and advocacy
  • Engage restoration activities
  • Encourage conservation
  • Focus on ecological health and biodiversity

*Sensible Transportation & Bicycle Advocacy

We like bikes. The bicycle is near and dear to our New Belgium hearts, as you might notice from the label of our flagship beer, Fat Tire! Not only is the bicycle all kinds of fun to ride but it keeps us healthy, and, when ridden in place of a car, it is better for the planet.

We are in support of Sensible Transportation projects that:

Support bike shops and bike loaning programs
Provide low income bike donations/earn-a-bike projects
Educate young riders through safe routes to school
Create infrastructure that is safe for all users

2013 Environmental Stewardship Grant Guidelines

Funding decisions are made by our Sustainability Department and our Coworker Philanthropy Committee.  Specifically, we focus our grants on the following four strategies to mitigate human impacts on the planet:

Youth Environmental Education – Accepting applications February 1, 2013- March 31, 2013. 

Sustainable Agriculture – Accepting applications April 1, 2013- May 31, 2013.

Sensible Transportation & Bike Advocacy – Accepting applications July 1, 2013 –August 31, 2013

Water Stewardship – Accepting applications September 1, 2013-October 31, 2013


Our geographic funding areas:

The states to receive funding in 2013 are Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, District of Columbia, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Iowa, Indiana, Kansas, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota,  Oregon, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, Washington, Wisconsin and Wyoming.





  • Organizations who receive a NBB sponsorship of more than $2500 in a calendar year.
  • Organizations who receive a grant from Save the Colorado.
  • Organizations without 501(c) (3) status, we do not fund organizations utilizing a fiscal sponsor.
  • Organizations who partner with Tour de Fat or Clips of Faith and receive funds from these events
  • Debt reduction
  • Requests from individuals including scholarships
  • Conferences, conventions or workshops
  • Political campaigns
  • Organizations for religious purposes
  • Fundraising events, music festivals, film festivals or cultural events
  • Public or private school programs
  • Production of films or other media-related projects
  • General operations
  • Foundations who allocate requested funds to other organizations or individuals
  • City, County or State agencies


How much to request:

Grants range from $5000-$25,000



How to APPLY:

  • Please choose the best funding category to match your organization.  Questions?  Please reach out to Kari Fletcher at


Grant reporting:

Grant recipients are required to fill out our reporting form for any grant of $2500 or more.  You can find our reporting form at

Reporting deadlines for grants made in 2012

  • Youth Environmental Education – 3/31/2013
  • Sustainable Agriculture – 5/31/2013
  • Sensible Transportation & Bike Advocacy -8/31/2013
  • Watershed Conservation and Restoration - 10/31/2013