Carlsberg reveals the story of the Carlsberg Foundations for the first time in the UK

Today, Danish beer brand Carlsberg is launching a new multi-million-pound campaign to share the story of the Carlsberg Foundations with UK consumers for the first time – showing there is more to the well-known brand than meets the eye.

Featuring long-time Carlsberg brand ambassador Mads Mikkelsen, the campaign explores the work of the Foundations, which were set-up by Carlsberg founder J.C. Jacobson and his son Carl in 1876 and 1902, making them some of the oldest philanthropic foundations in the world. Today, through the Carlsberg Foundations, almost 30% of Carlsberg’s global dividends[i] go to supporting projects in the arts, science, and in developing the crops of the future.

In the ad, which will appear across digital channels including BVOD, YouTube, Facebook, and Instagram, and be supported through OOH activations, Mikkelsen is seen walking through scenes that showcase examples of the wide range of project areas the Foundations support. The ad will run for eight weeks from Monday 20th March, followed by further bursts throughout 2023.

Highlighting the positive work of the Carlsberg Foundations follows a recent commitment from the Carlsberg Group to use 100% regenerative barley[ii] in its beers by the end of 2040. The UK aims to lead the charge within the Carlsberg Group, with a target to use this barley in 100% of Carlsberg Danish Pilsner brews by 2027. The programme will start this year, in partnership with 23 UK farmers, who will grow an estimated 7,000 tons of barley – enough to make up to 96 million pints per year[iii].

Carlsberg is also continuing its long-standing work with WWF-UK. During 2023, Carlsberg will work with the charity to help replenish up to 175 million pints of fresh water on farms across East Anglia[iv] . Carlsberg first began working with WWF in 2021, supporting a programme that helped restore the small but powerful plant, seagrass, and protect UK ocean wildlife[v].

Sam Johnson, Head of Marketing for Carlsberg, said:We're really excited to share the story of the Carlsberg Foundations with UK audiences for the first time. The Foundations truly showcase our belief that through making a better beer, we can make positive changes so it’s great to be able to shine a light on the progress our beers are helping to create. And we are pleased to once again partner with Mads Mikkelsen to help bring this fantastic story to life."

The campaign was developed by Grey Europe, AKQA Denmark, VMLY&R Commerce and produced by MYGOSH & CANADA.




[i] Almost 30% of group-wide dividends paid to The Carlsberg Foundations, of which 98% is paid out as grants. Averages, 5yrs ending 31.12.21.


[ii] Carlsberg Marston’s Brewing Company Limited (CMBC) defines “regenerative barley” as barley farmed using “regenerative techniques”. CMBC defines “regenerative techniques” as those which focus on improving ecosystem health and resilience (particularly soil health) by reducing the use of energy and chemical inputs in line with the definition provided on page 16 of WWF-UK’s “Land of Plenty” report published in February 2022, see


[iii] Each year, CMBC produces approximately 1.5m hectolitres (150,000,000 litres) of Carlsberg Danish Pilsner, using around 20,000 tons of barley. 7,000 tons represents 35% of this annual barley total, meaning regenerative barley is estimated to produce up to approximately 549HL (35% of 1.5m hectolitres is 549HL). This is the equivalent of 96 million pints.


[iv] Carlsberg is giving £150,000 to WWF-UK (reg. charity 1081247 & SC039593) to support participating farmers in East Anglia to replenish up to 100 million litres of fresh water, by helping them save water and reduce river pollution.


[v] Carlsberg gave £265,000 to WWF-UK (reg. charity 1081247 & SC039593) across 2021/22 to support UK seagrass restoration projects. See for full details