BBPA CEO appointed as new Chair of the Worldwide Brewing Alliance

The Worldwide Brewing Alliance (WBA) appointed Emma McClarkin as the new Chair, who currently serves as the Chief Executive of the British Beer & Pub Association (BBPA).

Effective today, she will begin a two-year term, filling the role left vacant by Jim McGreevy, the Beer Institute’s (USA) former President and CEO and the WBA’s former Chair. Her appointment comes at the start of the Annual Meeting of the Worldwide Brewing Alliance, being held in Geneva this week.

Prior to joining the BBPA in 2019, Emma served as a British Member of the European Parliament for the East Midlands for 10 years. A true beer lover, in that time she also served as Vice President of the European Parliament Beer Club.

She has also held posts including Chairman of the Commonwealth Forum and Director of Global Policy for the Sports Integrity Global Alliance and is currently a Non-Executive Director of The Federation Against Copyright Theft, Hampshire Cricket and the Ivors Academy, and is a Trusted Advisor to the Department of International Trade.

In 2022, Emma received an OBE for services to the UK’s beer and pub industry throughout the pandemic.

Since her appointment at BBPA, she has helped secure support for brewers and pubs as they navigated the COVID-19 pandemic as well as major changes to the UK excise duty regime to incentivize the consumption of lower strength drinks.

Justin Kissinger, WBA President and CEO, welcomed the appointment, “The WBA is excited to be working with a leader of Emma’s calibre and to benefit from her experience, energy and enthusiasm. She’s a skilled political communications expert and negotiator who has demonstrated that she’s a real champion for the brewing industry.”

“All over the world, the beer industry has a compelling story to tell: from the role it plays in building the social fabric of communities, supporting millions of good paying, local jobs, to the innovation it brings and how it can contribute to reducing harm.”

Emma said, “I’m honoured and excited to have been appointed as the WBA’s new Chair. Our industry is facing multiple global challenges that require a collective global response, and the Alliance can and should play a central role in this.

“I look forward to working with our members to ensure we can continue to brew the drinks that bring so much enjoyment to people in communities all around the world.”

The appointment coincides with the World Brewing Alliance’s Annual Conference taking place from 24th – 26th October in Geneva, where, amongst other events and meetings, British beers will be showcased to Ambassadors from across the world at a special reception supported by the BBPA.