77% of Anchor Employees Commit to Returning If Asked

June 10, 2024 – The members of Anchor Brewing’s union are “ready and excited” to return to work if asked. That’s according to a press release issued today by the International Longshore & Warehouse Union, the labor group representing the workers of the brewery under its former ownership with Sapporo.

30 out of the 39 union members made the commitment to return, while others stated they would return if they understood the plans for the brewery more.

What’s unclear, however, is whether its new owner will ask them to return. Hamdi Ulukaya, the billionaire founder behind yogurt brand Chobani, bought the brewery last week after an extensive bidding process. In the announcement of the sale, Ulukaya said that he met with “four people who used to work [at Anchor] until it was closed.”

In the statement, the ILWU says “Former Anchor workers have not met with Ulukaya or any of his representatives but said they are ready to talk.”

The full statement is below

Former Anchor Steam workers “ready and excited” to return to work if asked

77% of Anchor Union workers committed to reviving historic San Francisco brand

After the recent announcement that Anchor Brewing was sold to billionaire entrepreneur Hamdi Ulukaya who plans to restart the brewery and restore its traditional branding, an overwhelming majority of Anchor Union workers – 30 out of 39 – have committed to returning to work at the iconic San Francisco brewery if they are offered a job. Some of those who did not commit to returning stated they would if they received concrete information on Ulukaya’s plans for reopening the business.

Former Anchor workers have not met with Ulukaya or any of his representatives but said they are ready to talk. They said the fastest way to get Anchor’s iconic Steam Beer back in production would be to bring back the workers who are dedicated to the brand and have been brewing it for years.

Former Anchor worker Thomas Delany said bringing back the former workers would be a perfect bookend to Anchor Brewing’s latest comeback story.

“No one knows better how to brew and market Anchor beer better than us. Imagine the return of the same great product that people have enjoyed for years being made by the same dedicated workers that have loved making this iconic beer for years,” Delaney said.

“When I heard Hamdi Ulukaya had bought Anchor and was going to resurrect the brand, it was a dream come true. It was a real loss for San Francisco when Anchor went away,” said former Anchor worker Denny Miller. “The last day at the Public Taps was like a wake.”

“Anchor was the best job I ever had and the people there were some of the best people I have ever worked with,” said former Anchor worker Ryan Poulos. “We were committed to doing our best for Anchor and we all took pride in our work and being a part of a company that is so connected to San Francisco’s history. I would come back to Anchor Brewing in a heartbeat.”