Infinite Ingredient/Hazelden Betty Ford collaborate for craft beer

brewery worker employee checking tanks with clipboard

The Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation and Infinite Ingredient, a non-profit working to support the mental and physical well-being of people working in the craft beverage industry, recently announced a collaboration to help the craft brewing industry address substance use and mental health concerns among its workforce. The Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation’s Workplace Wellbeing Portal, launched in 2023, will be available to the more than 150,000 U.S.-based people working for craft breweries, offering a confidential avenue to discuss and address substance use and mental health challenges. 

Hazelden Betty Ford is the leading nonprofit system of substance use treatment, mental health care and family services — with sites and services across the U.S. as well as an acclaimed graduate school, publishing house and research center, and a global reach and reputation.

Founded in 2021, Infinite Ingredient has been focused on removing common barriers to mental and physical health resources and making resources available to everyone working for craft beverage producers across the world, starting with craft breweries in the United States. 

“The craft beer and craft beverage industry is often treated both inwardly and outwardly as a giant party, in spite of the fact that each facet of the industry requires hard work and can often be grueling,” said Katie Muggli, founder and executive director of Infinite Ingredient. “The question I keep coming back to is: how can we demonstrate and cultivate a healthy relationship with alcohol, when producing, selling, and serving it is our job? This is our first step in providing answers to that question, and we’re excited to launch this resource in collaboration with the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation.” 

Mental health challenges, especially substance use and addiction, have long been ignored and under-discussed in the craft beverage industry. Providing people working in the industry with a safe space to explore such challenges and creating conversations around overall health in the alcohol industry have been goals of Infinite Ingredient since it launched. 

“Most folks in the industry have seen or have even personally experienced the effects of consuming too much too often,” added Muggli. “Being able to collaborate with the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation to offer these resources and provide access to this Wellbeing Portal for folks to confidentially have these conversations will be really important for providing that safe space.” 

This is the first of what Infinite Ingredient hopes to be many tangible resources it can offer to individuals in the craft beverage industry. 

“When an employee of a U.S.-based craft brewery signs up for the Hazelden Betty Ford Workplace Wellness Portal or calls, they will be able to explore a whole suite of resources including assessments to determine substance misuse risk, receive personalized recommendations, and connect to resources and services from Hazelden Betty Ford and elsewhere,” said Muggli. “The best part is that it isn’t just for the individuals working in the industry–it’s for their families and loved ones too — so help and guidance is available whether you’re exploring resources on behalf of yourself or someone else.” 

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This service allows employees to seek help confidentially.

“We don’t want anyone to struggle alone or avoid help out of fear, so we’ve designed our portal to provide people with resources they can access immediately and confidentially, and a place to call for additional help whenever needed,” said John Sakacs, outreach manager and large employer solutions specialist for Hazelden Betty Ford. “Help could be as simple as talking to somebody over the phone about what’s going on and receiving some feedback and direction. Help could be guidance on assisting a loved one. Help could be learning about options available to those who are suffering and feeling alone. And help could also include direct assistance with initiating a treatment admission as a pathway toward recovery and a healthier, happier life.”

Calling the collaboration a “perfect marriage,” Sakacs — whose professional experience is supplemented by 21 years of personal lived experience in recovery — said Hazelden Betty Ford’s Workplace Wellbeing Portal helps remove the barrier of stigma and creates a healthier, more productive workforce.

“I know a lot of employees are suffering and need help. But they’re often afraid to get help in the workplace,” Sakacs said. “By creating these types of partnerships, providing confidential resources and also openly encouraging their use and access, we can reduce stigma as a barrier and help more people. Together, we’ll be able to get more people to walk through the door to help. Because the Workplace Wellbeing Portal and our specific collaboration with Infinite Ingredient includes many resources to support, nurture and educate families, we’ll be able to help them, too.”

To learn more about the Workplace Wellbeing Portal offered by the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation and Infinite Ingredient, visit infiniteingredient.org/wellbeingportal.

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