Canterbury brewing company owner apologises to NZ for racist social media comment about Māori men

The owner of a Canterbury brewing company has apologised to New Zealand for a racist social media comment he made about Māori men this week.

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David Gaughan says he is “appalled” with himself and is not a racist. Source: 1 NEWS

David Gaughan, who runs Eagle Brewing NZ in Kaiapoi, shared a comment on a 1 NEWS article posted to Facebook Wednesday about a Napier shooting.

His comment stated that "Māori are the scurge of New Zealand. The quicker we put them in prison the better. (sic)".

He added the opinion is aimed at "the male population. The ones who beat their missis (sic)".

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But it could be too little, too late for David Gaughan’s Eagle Brewing NZ. Source: 1 NEWS

The post has since been removed from Facebook.

This afternoon, Gaughan gave an interview to 1 NEWS where he said he is “appalled” with himself and is not a racist.

"Obviously there has been a huge backlash on the Facebook post I made, and my heartfelt apologies to the New Zealand public for the way that post has been put out there," he said.

"From my background, I was brought up with a lot of domestic violence myself and there has been a lot in the media about that and my emotions came to the fore and it was an explosion of those emotions. 

"I’ve been under a lot of stress and it’s an issue I feel quite strongly about and is prevalent in New Zealand across all cultures.

"The statement I made was absolutely out of order and I am appalled at myself at the way it came out."

Gaughan says he has offered his resignation to shareholders of Eagle Brewery and is awaiting the outcome. He also noted that he has been speaking to Māori friends in an attempt to learn from his mistakes.

While Gaughan has admitted his comments were racist, he denies being racist himself.

"That is not me, that is not who I am. We have a very multi-cultural team and they are very important to me."

Foodstuffs have pulled Eagle Brewing products from all Foodstuffs stores, including New World and Liquorland. 

Eagle Brewery beers. Source: Eagle Brewery NZ

Beer Jerk and The Lumsden Freehouse are among other pop craft beer spots to pull Eagle Brewing products.

A number of other stockists also told Stuff they have stopped selling Eagle Brewery's products after the owner's comments.

“We were horrified at the comments made and really disappointed seeing such an attitude on display from someone in an industry that is generally fairly forward thinking in these matters," director at The Beer Library in Christchurch Garth Peterson told Stuff.

"All Eagle products have been pulled from our shelves and we won't be stocking it again in the future.”

Galbraith's Alehouse in Grafton, Auckland, has also stopped stocking Eagle Brewery beers.

“I just thought what he said was shocking and sickening, and I do not want to be associated with anyone who holds those kinds of views," Keith Galbraith says.