Recent years have played witness to a wave of brands offering their support to the LGBTQ+ community, either by platforming queer people, or donating to queer organisations. But few can boast being a long term ally from a period of time when Pride wasn’t the massively popular razzle-dazzle event millions enjoy today.
International wine brand Barefoot has been a committed supporter of the LGBTQ+ community and LGBTQ+ causes since 1988. Their inclusive brand ethos is true to their namesake; the free-spirited nature of crushing grapes with your bare feet. Positivity is at the core of everything they do.
It was the Golden Gate Business Association of San Francisco – the world’s first LGBTQ+ chamber of commerce – that Barefoot Wine first supported 33 years ago, and they have continued to donate, support and organize thousands of LGBTQ+ charities and events since. Openly gay ‘Barefooter’ Randy Arnold joined the organisation in 1990 and continues to lead Barefoot’s support of the LGBTQ+ community until this day.
Of course, Barefoot supporting the community’s biggest annual event, Pride Month, has been a key part of their ongoing allyship. We’re sure that many LGBTQ+ adults out there will agree that wine and Pride pair perfectly. From parade floats to Pride parties, Barefoot have injected plenty of colour and fun into Pride marches across the globe. But their support isn’t limited to Pride celebrations.
From showing support to LGBTQ+ military members and their families through a partnership with OutServe, to being vocal and visible advocates for same-sex marriage, Barefoot Wine has never been shy to express where their loyalty towards freedom of expression and the fight for equality lies.
There’s also their partnership with Free Mom Hugs, whose work educating families, communities and civic leaders on the challenges faced by LGBTQ+ people has been crucial. Parents of LGBTQ+ youth continue to band together to help fight for the rights of the community and demonstrate what true allyship looks like.
We’ve said it before but we’ll say it again: allies are an important part of our journey towards true queer liberation. It’s organisations like Barefoot Wine who have consistently shown up for and supported our community that has helped drive real progress. There’s still a long way to go, but with allies willing to support, platform and celebrate LGBTQ+ people, those steps forward feel a little bit easier. We’ll happily raise a glass of Barefoot wine to that.