Pay At The Pump
Artificial Intelligence Beer

What do computers know about beer? They
can create recipes, it turns out, and a new
startup plans to sell beer recipes created by
artificial intelligence, adjusting subsequent
batches based on feedback from customers.

The beer company is called IntelligentX, and
its algorithm decides the precise balance of
ingredients that goes into each batch. As
customers drink them, they’re encouraged to
visit a website and share their feedback

If the humans decide that a beer has too much
hops, for example, the algorithm adjusts that
ingredient for the next batch. The first versions
of the recipes had issues, and changed based on
feedback.  It is an ongoing process.
The company's first beer called "AI" because
computers aren’t into punny beer names, is
only available in the United Kingdom so far

The world’s first contactless payment, self-service beer
pump was put to the test by consumers during the height
of pre-Christmas partying in the UK’s bars and pubs.

Pay@Pump allows drinkers to order and pour their own
pint and pay with a contactless card or device touched on
a pad at the base of the pump.  The average waiting time
at the bar during the Christmas party season was 12
minutes per order, according Barclaycard, totalling 35
minutes per person during a festive night out.

Almost one in four of bar-goers admitted they had
considered abandoning a drinks purchase because of long
bar queues, while 20% have gone elsewhere when facing
a lengthy wait. The pump solves this problem by
allowing  the beer supply to be regulated and turned on
following successful payment. It is hoped the device
will be rolled out throughout the UK next year, not only
in bars and pubs but also at large festivals and concerts
Safe Breweries-   The instance of occupational injuries at breweries has gone
down to 3.9 cases per 100,000 hours worked according to new data from the U.S.
Bureau of Labor Statistics. The rate had jumped to 5.3 the previous year but is now back
below the ten-year average.

Corona - When 98-year-old Antonino Fernández the founder of Corona beer
died recently his estate was valued at around $210 million.  His will directed some
money to be invested in fresh drinking water, the restoration of a church and the
redevelopment of a public square in his hometown Cerezales del Condado, Spain.

NY In China-  Beer brewed in New York and bearing the iconic "I Love NY" logo
will be distributed in China starting in early 2017.  Two Dragons beer made by the
Syracuse-based Empire Brewing Co. will be the first officially licensed "I Love NY"
beer ever made for a global audience.  It is brewed with hops grown in NY and
Chinese black tea.

That's A Lot  -  As 2016 draws to a close, the Brewers Association just released
its annual report noting that there are now 5,005 breweries in the USA. Almost all
(99%) are craft brewers.
Belgium Beer Culture Honored

In Belgium, beer drinking is serious business and it is now a recognized
part of the European nation's cultural contributions to the world.
Belgium beer culture has just been listed on the United Nations
Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO)
Intangible Cultural Heritage List.

That somewhat obscure international list created in 2008 already has
more than 300 places and traditions on it, including the Great Wall of
China, Tanzania's Stone Town in Zanzibar,  Spain's Flamenco, China's
dragon boat festival, and last year's entrants Arabic coffee and the
bagpipe culture in Slovakia.

The UN created its list of intangible cultural heritage to recognize
traditional events, rituals and social practices. To be considered, the
tradition should be passed down through generations and give those
involved a sense of identity. The list is meant to afford international
recognition and protection for cultural heritage from UNESCO

In its application, the Belgian brewery association noted beer
consumption goes beyond drinking alcohol for the side effect of
intoxication and is a national rite of passage.  Sven Gatz, who went
from being head of the Belgian Brewers Federation to becoming
Culture Minister for the northern region of Flanders, compared
the recognition to winning the World Cup.

"We love our beer and appreciate the endless diversity within it,
something that can't be equaled anywhere else in the world," Gatz
said. "In Belgium, beer doesn't have to give way to wine or other
drinks in terms of quality and diversity."  

In an era when alcohol abuse is a serious  concern, UNESCO said this
selection was about far more than just drinking. "Beer is also used by
communities for cooking, producing products like beer-washed
cheese, and paired with food."

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Edited by Jim Attacap