Big Medicine Brewing Company founders, Fernanda Krum and Robert Rivers, are looking to build the country’s first microbrewery and center for positive change in Missoula, Montana. After spending 13 years supporting efforts in peace-building and trauma healing in 15 different conflict zones around the world, the couple is looking to bring their knowledge and expertise to western Montana, but they need help to do it.
Krum, a native of Brazil, and Rivers, a Helena native, have been brewing beer for the last five years. Rivers holds a certificate in brewing and malting science from the University of Wisconsin as well as a master’s degree in peace and conflict studies from the European Centre for Peace Studies. Krum has a master’s degree in psychology and a certificate in global mental health from Harvard.
Using beer and their brewery as a medium and conversation-starter for peace, the couple plans to produce no more than 1,000 barrels of beer annually, and any annual earnings over $100,000 for the couple will go toward purchasing land for a retreat center near Missoula.
After opening, the couple will host monthly two-day workshops featuring subjects related to social conflict and social change initiation, as well as one-hour dialogues twice a month.
The Big Medicine Brewing Co. (BMBC) Mission Statement reads:
The Big Medicine Brewing Co. is a community-orientated and community-based Montana microbrewery grounded in the American, Irish, and Belgian brewing traditions. We brew expansive beers made from the highest quality ingredients and offer a celebratory atmosphere where friends and family can connect. The ultimate purpose of the brewery is to generate positive social change by supporting individuals and communities in their own transformation through educational processes so they are better prepared to transform the world around them.
Also from the website:
Not only will the BMBC produce excellent beer made from the highest quality ingredients and create space for people to connect and celebrate life together, it will also serve as a nexus for social change.
To achieve their dream, Krum and Rivers have launched a funding campaign today on Indiegogo with a goal of securing $40,400 in the next 35 days. Details about the campaign can be found on the BMBC website.
On June 25, BMBC presented a special 30th anniversary screening of Strange Brew at the Wilma Theatre, launching their campaign.
Krum and Rivers were also featured on a two-part series on PBS. Part One and Part Two. The couple can also be found at the Clark Fork River market on Saturdays, providing information about their project.
BMBC is also on Facebook.