Making An Impact During Pride Month Through Company Culture

In the United States, pride marches and parades trace their roots back to 1970 when they were created to mark the anniversary and commemorate the 1969 Stonewall Riots in New York City.  Today Pride Month is celebrated every June across the country as a means to create a safe space for the LGBTQ+ community to be visible and wholly themselves. But what if there are ways you could create that space within your cider company culture all year long?

Learn more about the LGBTQ+ acronym

This Pride Month, we invite you to create a work environment that makes your LGBTQ+ employees feel safe and valued. In all of these examples, your entire organization will be better poised to thrive by pursuing the steps outlined.

  • Review company policies that impact leadership and employee pipelines for LGBTQ+ employees: Do your anti-discrimination policies mention LGBTQ+ individuals? Have you evaluated your employee pipeline to see if you are creating opportunities for leadership development with your LGBTQ+ employees?
  • Support your staff’s mental health. Provide paid mental health days and create opportunities for mental health-restoring company group activities. Support human resource speakers talking to your team. Consider formal mental health benefits. Be aware of anti-LGBTQ+ events highlighted on the news and how that might emotionally impact employees.
  • Offer paid parental leave regardless of gender or biological/adoptive birth. 
  • Commit to learning and using the proper language. The language about the LGTBQ+ community evolves fast. Showing a commitment to using the right terms goes a long way in earning trust. 
  • Center the Trans experience in your inclusion efforts. As a leader, using your pronouns when you introduce yourself is validating for your transgender staff. Don’t make pronouns mandatory (some employees may not be out as trans individuals) but create space for others to follow suit when they are comfortable to do so. When pronoun wishes are shared by staff, honor them. Have a gender-neutral bathroom available.
  • Take an affirmative public position on LGBTQ+ inclusion and belonging. This can be through events, social media or partnerships. Some great examples include Seattle Cider Company partnering with Queer Mountaineers to support a safe space for outdoor enthusiasts of all backgrounds, genders, and sexualities; Diskin Cider Co. hosting Drag Brunch in Nashville and partnering with Tennessee-based LGBTQ+ affirming organizations to do so; and 1911’s PRIDE Cider connecting back to the Sylvia Rivera Law Project (a NY-based organization promoting free gender expression and working to improve equal access to quality social, health, and legal services). Avoid “rainbow washing” by creating and standing by policies that will protect and uplift the LGBTQ+ community.

You can find more in-depth resources for creating a workplace that is inclusive below: 

New Item Coding for UPCs with NIQ

We want to make sure your cider is accounted for in national sales data. It’s important every cider is included so we can have an accurate picture of the cider industry and collect data that you can use when pitching your ciders to wholesalers and retailers around the country.

Please find below detailed instructions for how to submit new products to NIQ (formerly Nielsen).

To get NEW UPCs added:

  1. Fill out the NPC 2023 Form.
  2. Send both the form and correct photos (see below for photo guidelines) to Mary Mills at 3 Tier Beverages and she and her team will make sure everything is good to go for NIQ. She recommends uploading images to a shared drive (Dropbox or Google Drive) in order to preserve image quality.

Photo Guidelines:

Below is an in-depth photo guideline to follow when submitting photos to NIQ to get new UPCs coded or current ones updated.

Nielsen accepts 2 types of photos:

  • 3D: Photos of the real 3D item.
  • Flat: 2D photos of the label/box.

Nielsen is VERY PARTICULAR about the photos needed so below are the guidelines to follow. The images needed are described below, flat photos are best if you have them. If not, please send images of the actual item. For either type of photos you choose to submit, Nielsen requires photos of:

  • Clear images of all 6 sides, including top & bottom of the individual product
  • Clear images of all 6 sides, including top & bottom of the packs (2/4/6/12pk/etc) are needed if they are not sold individually
  • Make sure photos are in jpeg format or else they will NOT be accepted
  • They need to be clear, have a neutral background, and high resolution so no blurring when zoomed in
  • Professional photos are not required

Click here to view photo examples for both 3-D and Flat.

Have questions? Email our NIQ contact Ryan Sisto.

Urge Congress to Support the USPS Shipping Equity Act

On May 23 Rep. Dan Newhouse (R-WA) once again introduced the USPS Shipping Equity Act in Congress alongside Rep. Jennifer Wexton (D-VA) and 8 other House co-sponsors. Currently, the U.S. Postal Service is not allowed to ship cider, beer, wine, or distilled spirits, because of a leftover, outdated ban put into effect during the Prohibition era. The USPS Shipping Equity Act would give parity to the US Postal Service, allowing it to ship licensed alcohol for commerce just like FedEex or UPS. Additionally, the USPS Shipping Equity Act gives rural producers access to another option for shipping alcoholic beverages. This bill is critical in leveling the playing field and increasing consumer and manufacturer choice while bringing in millions of dollars in revenue per year that will support small businesses, rural communities, agricultural enterprises and the US Postal Service.

We encourage you to email your Congressional representatives and urge them to cosponsor the USPS Shipping Equity Act. We have set up a campaign with an email template that you can use. Click the button below to be taken to the campaign. After you’ve emailed your reps, we encourage you to take a moment to share your actions on social media and via email to inspire others to reach out to their representatives as well.

Have questions? Please email ACA CEO Michelle McGrath.

Celebrate World Cider Day on June 3!

World Cider Day glass of cider on a post

Saturday, June 3, 2023 is World Cider Day! We hope you’ll join us in the international declaration of love for the beverage we all hold dear. Whether you’re sipping on a crisp apple driven cider or a unique botanical cider, take a moment to snap a photo and share it on your social channels this Saturday. Posting about your favorite cider can help raise awareness about this beautiful beverage and also gives you a chance to connect with other cider enthusiasts and cidermakers around the globe. Show your support for cidermakers and small businesses, and join the conversation using the hashtags #WorldCiderDay and #WCD2023 and tag us @pickcider. Let’s raise a glass to cider and cheers to a great day!

A Little History on World Cider Day

World Cider Day was launched by the members of the Association of Apple Wine and Fruit Juice Press Houses in Hesse, Germany in 2013 to promote cider and the meadow orchards in the region. Since then it has been embraced by cideries, bars, restaurants, cider associations and cider lovers all over the world. Learn more and find resources on the World Cider Day website.

New ACA Member Benefits!

We’re excited to share some new ACA member benefits with you this spring. Read on to learn more about our brand new resource hub, the new 3 Tier Beverages dashboard just released with Nielsen Q1 2023 data, and a free Crafted for All account now available to all members.

Resource Hub

We’re so excited to share that our new digital Resource Hub is now live! The resource hub is exclusively for ACA members and is filled with items useful for cider businesses of all sizes. The resource hub already includes a wealth of information and members can expect a quarterly release of new resources and will be notified via email when these updates occur.

Nielsen Q1 2023 Data on New 3 Tier Beverages Dashboard

3 Tier Beverages, in partnership with NielsenIQ, is proud to be the official data supplier of the American Cider Association. Part of this partnership brings you quarterly dashboards with key market data and insights to help you drive your business forward. The first dashboard is now available with data through Q1 2023 (3/25/23).

Crafted for All Account

We’ve had the privilege of working with Dr. J Nikol Jackson-Beckham and her organization Crafted for All for several years now and we’re so pleased to be able to expand our partnership and offer all ACA members the opportunity to create an account with Crafted for All where you’ll find a wealth of resources. 

We’re Looking for Vendors for CiderCon® 2024

Did you know that the largest gathering of cider producers in the world is coming to Portland, Oregon  next January for CiderCon® 2024? In addition to a wide range of educational sessions and events for cider producers, we also host an extensive trade show where our attendees can meet vendors with products and services that can help them thrive. CiderCon® 2024 will be held at the Oregon Convention Center from January 17-19 and the trade show will be right in the middle of it all. We haven’t been back to Portland since 2016, so we’re anticipating a great turn out!

If you haven’t been a vendor at CiderCon® before, now is the time to get involved and showcase your products and services to the rapidly growing cider industry. Our attendees always appreciate the chance to meet new vendors.

Have you already been a vendor at CiderCon®? Then you already know how much our attendees love the trade show and seek it out to connect with you!

Booth prices for CiderCon® 2024 are $3000 for a 10’ x 10’ space – and that includes 3 passes to the conference as well as lunch on Thursday and Friday!

Interested in joining us? Email our Trade Show Coordinator Ellen Husch for more information!

Know a company that you think would be a great fit? Send their contact information to Ellen.

There are also numerous sponsorship opportunities available for vendors. Supporting the American Cider Association is a great way to gain brand visibility at CiderCon® and beyond. There are a myriad of reasons why sponsoring the ACA works in your favor. We shout out our appreciation for our sponsors far and wide at CiderCon®, on our website, on social media and our members hear us. Our Executive Director Michelle McGrath is eager to work with you on creating a custom sponsorship experience that meets your brand’s personality and needs. Email Michelle to schedule a meeting.

Webinar: How Cideries Like Santa Cruz Cider Are Preventing Catastrophic Climate Change

There are a significant number of reasons why cideries like Santa Cruz Cider are looking to become more sustainable. Agriculture health, ingredient accessibility, customer engagement, preserving the bottom line, and protecting the planet are all driving cideries to focus on sustainability.

Join Jenny Morgan from Tradewater and Nicole Todd of Santa Cruz Cider Co. on June 6 at 10:00 AM Pacific for a discussion of the ways that Santa Cruz Cider committed themselves to sustainable action and how they came to partner with Tradewater.

We will also dive deeper into the high-impact climate projects that Tradewater leads and how each cidery can do their part to prevent catastrophic climate change.

Interested in learning how you can take action on sustainability in your cidery? Download this PDF with suggestions from Tradewater.

Our Speakers

Jenny Morgan joined Tradewater in 2022 as the Market Development Manager. In her role, she partners with organizations to help achieve carbon neutrality through sustainability consultation, emissions reduction, and the purchase of carbon credits. She operates under the belief that our most challenging problems cannot be solved by government and nonprofits alone – it requires a collective effort. She is passionate in changing the way we view business and industry to be both profitable and purposeful. Prior to joining Tradewater, Jenny has worked within the technology and hospitality sectors, and comes with 15+ years of experience in Business Operations, Market Development, Events, and Community Engagement. Outside of work, Jenny enjoys spending time with her family and friends hiking, running, swimming, and planning themed celebrations.

Nicole’s love for cider started with a truck bed full of ‘found’ apples in a nearby orchard. Having a passion for fermenting anything she could get her hands on, she started Santa Cruz Cider Co. in 2013 with the help of her husband and her sister. They have built the company from the ground up on a shoestring budget with a hands on approach. Nicole lives on a historic apple orchard in Santa Cruz county with her husband and two dogs.