Brewers Protest NC
Beer Fad in Vietnam
Folks in Vietnam sure do like beer. Over the last
decade beer sales have soared and the country
has become one of the largest per capita
consumers in the region.

The country does have a tradition of drinking
beer in their famous freshly-brewed bia hoi can
still be found on street here, but it is in the mass-
produced larger sector that things have come
on in leaps and bounds.

One main reason for the increased consumption
iis the fact that beer has become hip with young
adults. Over the past few years, ‘beer clubs’, as
they are known, have sprouted all over the
country. These drinking palaces are generally
lavishly decorated venues pumping out dance
music, with crowds of people gathered in
groups drinking beer from a tower device so
they can self-serve. The bathrooms come
complete with basins set aside for drinkers to
purge themselves before returning to the action.
It's a beer with a message. Responding to North
Carolina's HB2 law that voids cities' anti-discrimination
rules, two of the state's brewers are creating a new beer:
the Don't Be Mean to People: A Golden Rule Saison.

Three dozen breweries have signed up to sell the beer on
their draft taps; cans of it will also go to people who have
donated to the project's fundraising campaign, which
currently stands at nearly $18,000 — far more than the
original goal of $1,150.

While it may seem like a symbolic gesture, the beer also
signals resistance to the controversial legislation from
within North Carolina's burgeoning beer industry, which
last year accounted for $1.2 billion in economic impact,
according to the Brewers Association.

The adoption of HB2, which keeps cities from enacting
rules protecting members of the LGBT community from
discrimination, has sparked an ACLU lawsuit and
prompted calls for boycotts of North Carolina by
entertainers as well as civic groups and businesses.
Affordable-  Krakow, Poland beat out Kiev, Ukraine ($1.665), for the Most
Affordable  Beer City by a fraction of a penny, with Bratislava, Slovakia (1.69), rounding
out the top three. A traveler in Krakow could buy nearly four beers for the amount it
would cost to get a single drink in Geneva ($6.32) – the world's most expensive city for
beer just ahead of Hong Kong ($6.16) and Tel Aviv ($5.79)

Mug Record- A German waiter has broken a world record by carrying 27 full
mugs of Bavarian beer.  Oliver Struempfel in the town of Abensberg and took on
the beer-carrying challenge after months of training.  He carried the  full one-litre
mugs a distance of 40m (131ft) without spilling a drop.

#1 For Cask Ale-   In a new report from CAMRA titled, "The World’s Best Beer
City", the Sheffield City Region was cited as “the Real (cask) Ale capital of the
world”, the "birthplace of UK craft bee" and an area of "unique brewing vitality".

Brewing Degree-  Illinois university has a brand new accredited degree in
fermentation science to train future brewers, distillers and vintners. The state Board
of Higher Education just announced approval of it as a Bachelor of Science degree  
Hop Shortage

Fans of craft beer could soon face higher bar bills as small,
independent brewers face a potentially serious shortage of hops.
The hot and dry weather last summer blighted the European hop
harvest, and strong demand for craft beers, many of which use a
large amount of hops, is putting small brewers’ profit margins under
pressure and forcing them to raise prices.  Prices of some hop varieties
have risen by up to 50%, industry sources say, while others are up to
five times more expensive or simply not available.

Most brewers have contracts with hop growers that protect them
from sudden price surges, but future supply is at risk. The scarcity
may get worse as multinationals such as AB InBev and SABMiller buy
up craft beer brands and ramp up their production.

Hop production is down internationally. Germany’s harvest fell by 27%
last summer, according to the International Hop Growers’ Convention.
There were also sharp declines in Czech Republic and Slovenia.

Hops often range in price from about $3 a pound to $25 a pound
(£2-£18), but extreme demand can push prices higher.  Hops fall into
two main categories: alpha, which give beer its bitterness, and aroma,
which enhance smell and flavour. Aroma hops are currently either
unavailable or in very short supply

Economists agree that high prices would bring an increase in plantings,
but since it takes three years for a new hop field to reach full yield, hop
prices would rise further this year.

This would not affect mainstream beers, where hops make up 2% at
most of the price, but craft beers have a higher proportion of hops and
so an impact on prices may be seen.

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Edited by Jim Attacap