News Bites: Chair 2 Launches Two New Flavors / New CCRI Environmental Degree Program / Granny Squibb’s Newest Flavor / Hope’s Harvest Joins Farm Fresh RI / Foolproof Brewing Company Joins Mission Beverage

by David Dadekian
Published: Last Updated on

Current news releases—Eat Drink RI is not the source for these items—please follow any links for more information.


Chair 2 Light Beer Launches 2 New Light Flavors

Chair 2 Light Wheat and Light IPA – New 99 Calorie Offerings from Sons of Liberty

Chair 2 Light Beers
Chair 2 Light Beers

Chair 2 Light Beer, a brand by Rhode Island’s Sons of Liberty Beer & Spirits Co., is making waves with its two latest offerings – Chair 2 Light IPA and Chair 2 Light Wheat. The entire Chair 2 Light Beer line, including the light lager, is 4.3% abv, 99 calories per can, and available throughout Rhode Island.

The light IPA (55 IBUS) offers a bouquet of hop aromas followed by a bright and balanced flavor profile that gives IPA lovers what they’re looking for without weighing them down. The light wheat is brewed with orange peel to deliver a refreshing hit of citrus, but is careful not to be a fruit bomb, relying more on the beer itself to do the heavy lifting. 

“We’re very excited to see these two new flavors in everyone’s coolers,” said Bryan Ricard, Chair 2’s Brand Manager. “They definitely fall in line with our simple vision of ‘light beer that tastes like beer’.”

Chair 2 Light Lager, the flagship beer, was named USA’s Best Light Lager at the World Beer Awards in 2021, shortly after its launch. “We’ve taken the same approach with the new flavors as we did with the lager. That’s to make clean, crushable, high-quality beers that aren’t over the top, just easy-drinking,” explained Wil Santiago, Chair 2’s Beerologist. Rhode Islanders are catching on production of Chair 2 has increased to meet demand.

All 3 beers are brewed and packaged at Isle Brewers Guild (IBG) in Pawtucket, RI. “It was important for us to keep this in Rhode Island,” President and Founder, Mike Reppucci, explained, “and Isle has been an excellent partner.” IBG works with many well-established brands such as Narragansett and Night Shift. To follow the latest on and find retailers for Chair 2 Light Beer, visit chair2.com. Or follow on Facebook at Facebook.com/chair2beer and Instagram at @chair2beer.


New Associate degree program at CCRI in “Environment, Sustainability, and Management”

Innovative collaboration with Rhode Island Nursery & Landscape Association and Rhode Island Food Policy Council provides a clear path toward careers in RI’s growing land and sea industries

Environment, Sustainability and Management Associate Degree at CCRI, photo credit: RINLA
Environment, Sustainability and Management Associate Degree at CCRI, photo credit: RINLA

Rhode Island needs a workforce that can meet the current and future needs of the state’s flourishing land and sea businesses, which compose a sector that is quickly rising to the top of the state’s strongest economic drivers. 

A new associate degree in Environment, Sustainability, and Management created by the Community College of Rhode Island (CCRI) is a first-of-its-kind program that will prepare students for careers in these industries – including the landscape, farm and food sectors – and arm them with the perspective they need to meet social, economic, and ecological challenges of the world and of business today.

The development of this associate degree program was supported by a grant from the Agriculture Workforce Development Program of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture.

“This new degree program is a perfect example of industry and policy leaders collaborating with higher education to design and implement an academic and career pathway that responds to labor market demands,” said Meghan Hughes, president of CCRI. “The green economy continues to show tremendous growth in Rhode Island, and CCRI, along with our partners at URI, RINLA, and RIFPC, is committed to providing high-quality, rigorous academic and experiential learning opportunities that will prepare Rhode Islanders for great careers right here in the Ocean State.”

This interdisciplinary program blends science and business; provides work-based learning opportunities for credit; includes courses in Business, Biology, Entrepreneurship, Oceanography, Geology, Economics, Chemistry, and Communications; and positions graduates to chart successful career paths and have important impacts on the social and environmental profiles of the companies for which they work. Graduates will have immediate career opportunities, and can also transfer seamlessly as juniors to the University of Rhode Island’s bachelor’s degree programs in Sustainable Agriculture and Food Systems, Plant Sciences, and other programs in the College of the Environment and Life Sciences (CELS). 

“The new Environment, Sustainability, and Management degree will educate the next generation of professionals charged with stewarding, protecting, and responding to a changing environment and for producing food for our community,” said Rosemary A. Costigan, vice president for academic affairs at CCRI.  “In response to industry need, a number of our college’s faculty created new curricula based in science and business such as Biology of Trees and Shrubs, Food from the Sea, and the Human Environmental Impacts and Ethical Business Practices capstone course.”

The Rhode Island Nursery & Landscape Association (RINLA) and the Rhode Island Food Policy Council (RIFPC) collaborated closely with CCRI and advisors from URI to inform the development of this exciting program of study at the intersection of environmental, social, and economic sustainability; agriculture, food, and ecological systems; business ethics; entrepreneurial thinking and processes; land and resource management methods; and impacts of climate change on ecologies, businesses, and industries. 

Shannon Brawley, Executive Director of RINLA and Nessa Richman, Network Director of the RIFPC jointly stated, “This exciting new, interdisciplinary degree program will support the public, private, and nonprofit employers we serve by preparing people to enter these industries by ensuring they have relevant classroom experiences and work-based learning opportunities.” 

Fall classes start August 31, 2022. Enrollment is now open. All Rhode Islanders who want the knowledge, skills, perspective and experiences to impact the social, economic, and ecological challenges of today’s world are encouraged to register. Additional information can be found on CCRI’s website: ccri.edu/pathways/paths/environment


Granny Squibb’s Announces New Organic Iced Tea Flavor, Partnership, and Expansion in Massachusetts Just in Time for National Iced Tea Month

Granny Squibb’s is releasing Porter’s Peach with a portion of the proceeds going Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and the Jimmy Fund

Granny Squibb's Organic Iced Tea

Today, Granny Squibb’s Organic Iced Tea announced the release of its newest flavor, Porter’s Peach. Further solidifying their commitment to growth in New England with a portion of sales going to their newest philanthropic partner the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and the Jimmy Fund, and expansion into Roche Bros. 

“Porter’s Peach is the first new flavor we’ve brought to market since before the pandemic. It was created from a beautiful story, which continues our passion for storytelling and philanthropy,” said Kelley McShane, Partner and Owner of Granny Squibb’s. 

Porter’s Peach was the brainchild of a family friend, a twelve-year-old, named Porter from Aquidneck Island, R.I. In Spring 2020, in an effort to boost morale Porter sent a drawing of his idea for the “best Granny Squibb’s flavor, Porter’s Peach.” During the same year, Porter and his family faced multiple losses to cancer triggering Porter to raise $10,000 for cancer research and paving the way for Granny Squibb’s to work with Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and the Jimmy Fund to help continue Porter’s mission. 

“The story of Porter’s Peach and the generosity of Granny Squibb’s company touches us as an organization,” said Alexa Woodward, VP of Corporate Partnerships at the Dana Farber Cancer Institute. “We know that we impact the lives of so many people right here in New England and beyond. It’s through the work of our supporters that we’re able to continue our mission of treating cancer and continuing to research and develop the latest in new treatments.”

Granny Squibb deeply believes in being part of the community, supporting the people around them. Having supported the Jimmy Fund for more than three years, the addition of Porter’s Peach provides the financial avenue to grow their philanthropy in Massachusetts and deepen partnerships as they grow into greater New England. 

The announcement of Porter’s Peach and the Dana Farber Cancer Institute couldn’t be timelier as Granny Squibb’s expands into all twenty Roche Bros stores in Massachusetts. Now consumers can easily purchase Granny Squibb’s products and know they are supporting local causes.

“At Roche Bros we are committed to providing our shoppers with an array of local and organic products to choose from making the addition of Granny Squibb’s a perfect fit. We are happy to be expanding our partnership with a company that also focuses on providing the best customer experience,” said Tristen Kendall-Barros, Vice President of Marketing for Roche Bros. 


Hope’s Harvest Joins Farm Fresh RI to Provide Hunger Relief Programming

Farm Fresh Rhode Island and Hope’s Harvest are proud to announce that as of June 2022, Hope’s Harvest is officially the home for all hunger relief programming at Farm Fresh RI. 

Hunger in Rhode Island is a significant problem that has only increased in severity and scope in recent years. At the same time, local food producers in the state have seen increased demand, but also volatility in markets and challenges due to erratic weather patterns, shifts in purchasing at a national scale, and other national and global forces. 

Farm Fresh RI, a nonprofit that’s been working to strengthen the local food system since 2004,  has been a champion for local farmers/producers and an infrastructural driver of a re-localizing food system over the past 18 years. Hope’s Harvest, a relative newcomer, has filled an important niche in the RI food system by connecting farmers to hunger relief agencies, promoting food security and non-traditional market access to the emergency food system. 

Hope’s Harvest has been an independent but fiscally sponsored program of Farm Fresh RI since 2018. This sponsorship enabled Hope’s Harvest to accept donations and grants under the Farm Fresh 501c3 nonprofit status. Farm Fresh mentored growth at Hope’s Harvest and provided infrastructure support, like trucks and cold storage, as well as a place to call home when the Hope’s Harvest team parked their trucks and came in from the field. 

“As our program grew, it became apparent that combining Hope’s Harvest and Farm Fresh models and infrastructure would best leverage our assets and public/private partnerships,” explains Hope’s Harvest Founder and Director Eva Agudelo. “Together we can create targeted solutions for both food insecurity and increasingly volatile markets for farmers. We’re excited about all of the collaborations to come — delivering the highest quality of locally grown food to hunger relief agencies and alleviating food insecurity in Rhode Island.”

What does this change mean for Hope’s Harvest? 
By joining Farm Fresh RI’s infrastructure, Hope’s Harvest is building capacity to deliver local gleaned produce to an additional 20 hunger relief agencies via Farm Fresh’s existing Market Mobile local food ordering service. The Hope’s Harvest team will also be administering the Senior Farmer Market Nutrition program and the Local Food Purchasing Assistance program in partnership with the RI Department of Environmental Management.

What does it mean for Hope’s Harvest gleaning volunteers? 
Out in the fields, the Hope’s Harvest team still aims to glean as much food this year as ever! They plan to harvest with even more local farms, and encourage the community to join them out in the fields this season. Learn more about opportunities to volunteer with Hope’s Harvest: www.farmfreshri.org/hopesharvest.

At a Glance: Hope’s Harvest for Hunger Relief at Farm Fresh RI
The Hope’s Harvest program at Farm Fresh RI will include: 

GLEANING 
— Recruiting and mobilizing volunteers to recover surplus food from farms for donation to hunger relief agencies.

DIRECT PURCHASING FOR HUNGER RELIEF
— Surplus Purchasing: Direct purchasing of surplus farm produce for distribution to hunger relief agencies and community partners.

— Contracts for Hunger Relief: Negotiating and administering contracts with growers to ensure a steady supply of fresh, nutritious produce for the emergency food system at competitive wholesale rates.

— Farm to Pantry via Market Mobile: A streamlined system and subsidized purchasing for community partners to order locally grown products for their guests. 

SENIOR FARMERS MARKET NUTRITION PROGRAM 
— Source and pack locally grown produce to meet the needs of older adults throughout RI in partnership with the RI Department of Environmental Management.

ADVOCACY AND PARTNERSHIPS 
— Working with strategic partners in the nonprofit and government sectors to ensure ongoing support for these initiatives as a commitment to supporting public infrastructure for healthy food access.


Foolproof Brewing Company is Now Distributed by Mission Beverage

As of June 2022 Foolproof Brewing Company is now being distributed in Rhode Island by new distributors in the business, Mission Beverage. Mission beverage was started by Kyle Michaud and Nate Costa. After meeting during a fire department fundraising event, Kyle and Nate bonded over their passion for craft beer and began brainstorming ways to collaborate together in the beer industry. Thus began their mission toward starting a distribution company. Mission Beverage officially moved their first case of beer in February 2022. Mission looks to bring the same tenacity to the brands they wish to distribute as they did when starting their business. “We take pride in our partnerships to help grow the brands to get from one level to the next level up,” says Nate Costa.

Foolproof Brewing Company signed with Mission Beverage as their new distributors in Rhode Island in June 2022. Along with this agreement, Mission will also be distributing Foolproof’s sister brands under the Brewery Collective. This includes Shebeen Brewing Company, originally started in Connecticut and moved production to Rhode Island in February. Soon to follow will be the Brewery Collective’s newest Connecticut brand, Velvet Libations, which just opened on St. Patrick’s Day of this year. “We’re focused on distributing in Rhode Island right now and bringing in brands that aren’t in Rhode Island yet.”, says Kyle Michaud, and Velvet Libations will be no exception.

Want to see Foolproof or Shebeen Brewing Company products near you? Contact Mission Beverage and support Rhode Island locally. Email: [email protected] To learn more about the Brewery Collective, visit www.brewerycollective.com. To learn more about Mission Beverage visit www.missionbev.co.

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