Beer

Yuengling Brewery owner throws support behind Trump, beer fans call for boycott

Features & Faces: Beer drinkers call for boycott after owner reportedly backs Trump

 

Many big names in the food and beverage industry have thrown their weight behind Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton. But one historic brewery owner is going against the grain.

Eric Trump, the GOP presidential hopeful’s middle son, visited D.G. Yuengling & Son Brewery in Schuylkill County, Penn. Tuesday. It’s America's oldest brewery and remains family-owned after nearly two centuries in operation.

According to Reading Eagle, Trump toured the brewery with Richard “Dick” Yuengling, the plant’s fifth-generation owner.

"This is an amazing American success story," Trump said during a news conference outside the brewery. "We need a lot more of these."

He continued, "Because of a great company like Yuengling, workers can educate their kids and live a prosperous lifestyle."

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Founded in 1829, Yuengling is also one of the country’s largest beer companies, producing 2.8 billion barrels annually. Dick Yuengling is credited with turning the relative small operation into a national powerhouse. They now operate three beer making facilities-- Pottsville, Penn., East Norwegian Township and Tampa, Fla.

Now, the notoriously hard-working brewery owner appears to admire another man who went into the family business to build an empire.

"Our guys are behind your father," Yuengling reportedly told Eric Trump. "We need him in there."

But some fans of Yuengling don’t seem to share the brewmasters’ views. This week, dozens of social media posts have popped up citing Yuengling's alleged Trump endorsement, with many vowing never to touch the iconic American beer again using the hashtag #BoycottYuengling.

On Wednesday, state representative Brian Sims, one of Pennsylvania’s first openly gay state legislators, wrote a Facebook post criticizing the company. He says he's been drinking the beer for 17 years but has since called on others-- particularly those in the LGBT community-- to stop drinking the beer.

“D.G. Yuengling & Son, Inc. believes that an agenda that is anti-woman, anti-immigrant, anti-LGBT, anti-racial minority and anti-equality is best for them and that tells me all I need to know about what they think is best for their own customers."

Throughout the week, Sims has doubled down on his call for a boycott of the multi-generational institution.

Some, however, shared their support of Yuengling’s outspoken praise of The Donald.

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According to FOX 8,  Yuengling Jr.’s support thus far is only verbal as he is not listed as a Trump donor. In the past, he has given money to both Republican and Democratic congressional campaigns. According to OpenSecrets.org, his last presidential donation was to George W. Bush in 2000.

When reached for comment by Forbes, Dick Yuengling said he would certainly welcome Hillary Clinton to tour the brewery facilities but would elaborate on his comments about Trump, declaring,“I’ve said enough.”

Numerous attempts to reach a brewery representative were not returned.