CUB extends partnership with NRL

Carlton & United Breweries (CUB) and the National Rugby League (NRL) have announced a new partnership, taking the relationship into its 19th year.

The elevated partnership includes CUB becoming the official beer and cider partner of the Kangaroos and Jillaroos Australian representative teams; and CUB becoming the official beer and cider partner of the Holden State of Origin series.

Under the agreement the VB Friday Night Football partnership will also continue.

CUB’s VP of Marketing, Richard Oppy, was pleased to reaffirm CUB’s long-term sponsorship of rugby league in Australia.

“CUB has a long association with rugby league in Australia and we’re proud to be continuing to develop world class fan engagement initiatives to support this great and iconic game,” Oppy said.

NRL Chief Commercial Officer Andrew Abdo said the NRL and CUB partnership would continue to deliver great outcomes for two of Australia’s most iconic brands.

“CUB has been a supporter of rugby league and its fans over many years and we thank them for a partnership that is extending to be one of our longest standing,” Abdo said.

“We look forward to even greater opportunities together in the years ahead.”


Coopers releases 2017 Vintage Ale

A new combination and hops and enriched malt flavours are the key characteristics of 2017 Coopers Extra Strong Vintage Ale.

The release of Vintage Ale is an annual event in the liquor trade and wider beer industry and is being celebrated this year with special evening launches in Sydney, Melbourne and Adelaide.

While hops remain the cornerstone of the 2017 Coopers Vintage Ale, this year brewers have revised the grist recipe, the first change in a decade.

Coopers Managing Director and Chief Brewer, Dr Tim Cooper, said the new grist recipe included a special blend of caramalt to provide a distinctive crimson red colour and a full bodied taste rich in malty, honey and dry nutty characters.

“The caramalt contributes well to the balance of bold malt flavours and the softness of a fine and creamy head,” he said.

“Vintage Ale is known for its bold and robust selection of hops and this year we have chosen the new bittering and aromatic varieties Denali and Calypso, which deliver a delicate spectrum of fruity aromas, with pineapple and pear characteristics alongside pine and citrus notes.

“Last year’s Vintage used a combination of Astra, Melba, Northern Brewer, Styrian Goldings and Cascade.”

Dr Cooper said the 2017 Vintage had a bitterness of 50 IBU that was expected to carry well as the beer matures.

The beer retains an alcohol level of 7.5 per cent ABV, which will also help with the maturation process.

Coopers National Sales and Marketing Director, Mr Cam Pearce, said only a limited number of kegs and cartons would be made available and Vintage Ale lovers were encouraged to plan their purchases early.

“This is one of the few beers on the market that is designed to age and is unique in Australia,” he said.

The 2017 Extra Strong Vintage Ale is the 17th in the series that goes back to its launch in 1998. It will be available in key venues in August.

Western Australian grain growers break into Asian beer market

The CBH Group joins Interflour Group in celebrating the opening of the US$70 million Intermalt facility in Vietnam providing Western Australian grain growers with direct access to the Asian beer market.

CBH Chairman Wally Newman and Chief Executive Officer Andy Crane attended the ceremony together with directors and senior leaders including Interflour Group Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer Greg Harvey, Intermalt General Manager James Kirton and representatives from the Vietnamese government.

Mr Newman said CBH’s involvement in downstream grain processing, through its 50 per cent shareholding of Interflour, had diversified the co-operative’s income stream and resulted in increased market opportunities for Australian grain.

“CBH’s investment in Interflour 12 years ago was ground breaking and today’s opening of the Intermalt facility in Vietnam marks a new phase of growth for the business as it moves into barley processing and expands across South East Asia,” said Newman.

“It will be a new chapter for Western Australian barley growers who now have direct access to Vietnam’s burgeoning beer market – the fastest growing beer market in Asia.”

Mr Newman said over the past harvest growers delivered 1.5 million tonnes of malt barley into the CBH receival network and the facility provides a new market for growers.

As part of the final commissioning phase, Intermalt has already purchased 42,000 tonnes of malt barley, with 32,000 tonnes coming from the Kwinana and Albany port zones of the Western Australian grain belt.

Intermalt is located in Cai Mep, Vietnam, and will be the largest malting plant in South East Asia. It will have the capacity to produce 110,000 tonnes of malt a year and will service major brewers in the region including Heineken Vietnam.

“Not only is the Intermalt infrastructure impressive, but so too is the growth and opportunity it affords our growers, our businesses and the Asia Pacific region as a whole,” Mr Newman said.

“Our current and future growers can look forward to benefiting from Interflour’s expansion and this new venture generating value that we can then return to them a number of ways including through our investment rebate.”

Heineken Vietnam Corporate Affairs Director Matt Wilson said, “Heineken Vietnam always seeks to use local suppliers where possible in order to drive jobs and wealth in Vietnam”.

“Our preference for local sourcing has seen us contribute around 0.75 per cent of Vietnam’s total GDP and support nearly 200,000 jobs in Vietnam,” he said.

“Because of this, we are very happy to see Intermalt entering the local market with the potential to supply us with locally produced malt in the future and increase our contribution to the Vietnamese economy.”

Newcomer surprises at the CBIA Craft Beer Awards 2017

After only four months on the market Philter XPA Draught has taken out Best Pale Ale at the 2017 CBIA Craft Beer Awards in Adelaide.

Hitting locals in March this year, the XPA was the first release for the young Sydney brewing company that sets itself apart with its late 1980’s Australiana aesthetic and distinctive can design.

In her many years in the industry, Head Brewer Samara Füss has collected loads of national and international awards, but this is her first individual Champion win. “I’m absolutely stoked. I am so proud of this beer, it’s everything we wanted for our first release so it’s a sweet win,” Füss said.

Füss crafted the XPA as a naturally cloudy ale with tropical fruit aromas and a refreshing hop flavour. It’s already an easy-drinking hit and is all set to be a summer session favourite. New warm-weather releases are in the pipeline, too, so watch this space.

“We know it’s a great beer and it’s been really well-received so far, and Sam is a bloody great brewer, so part of me was quietly confident. But we’re so new, we thought it was a massive long shot,” said Sales and Marketing Director, Stef Constantoulas.


Beer that boosts immunity and improves gut health

Beer lovers may soon have a gut-friendly drink to raise a toast to, thanks to the creation of a novel probiotic sour beer by a team of researchers from the National University of Singapore (NUS). This new specialty beer incorporates the probiotic strain Lactobacillus paracasei L26, which was first isolated from human intestines and has the ability to neutralise toxins and viruses, as well as regulate the immune system.

The idea of producing a probiotic beer was first mooted by Miss Chan Mei Zhi Alcine, a fourth-year student from the Food Science and Technology Programme under the NUS Faculty of Science, who consumes dairy-based probiotic beverages daily.

“The health benefits of probiotics are well known. While good bacteria are often present in food that have been fermented, there are currently no beers in the market that contain probiotics. Developing sufficient counts of live probiotics in beer is a challenging feat as beers contain hop acids that prevent the growth and survival of probiotics. As a believer of achieving a healthy diet through consuming probiotics, this is a natural choice for me when I picked a topic for my final-year project,” said Miss Chan, who will be graduating with a Bachelor of Applied Science with Honours (Highest Distinction) from NUS in July 2017.

Infusing beer with health benefits

Studies have shown that consuming food and beverages with live counts of probiotics are more effective in delivering health effects than eating those with inactive probiotics. Currently, the recommendation by the International Scientific Association for Probiotics and Prebiotics is to have a minimum of 1 billion probiotics per serving in order to attain the maximum health benefits.

Under the supervision of Associate Professor Liu Shao Quan from the NUS Food Science and Technology Programme, Miss Chan took about nine months to come up with an ideal recipe that achieves the optimal count of live probiotics in the beer.

By propagating the probiotic and yeast in pure cultures, and modifying conventional brewing and fermentation processes, Miss Chan managed to increase and maintain the live counts of the strain of probiotic. “For this beer, we used a lactic acid bacterium as a probiotic micro-organism. It will utilise sugars present in the wort to produce sour-tasting lactic acid, resulting in a beer with sharp and tart flavours. The final product, which takes around a month to brew, has an alcohol content of about 3.5 per cent,” explained Miss Chan. The NUS research team has filed a patent to protect the recipe for brewing the probiotic sour beer.

Assoc Prof Liu said, “The general health benefits associated with consuming food and beverages with probiotic strains have driven demand dramatically. In recent years, consumption of craft or specialty beers has gained popularity too. Alcine’s invention is placed in a unique position that caters to these two trends. I am confident that the probiotic gut-friendly beer will be well-received by beer drinkers, as they can now enjoy their beers and be healthy.”

Looking ahead, Assoc Prof Liu and Miss Chan are keen to collaborate with industry partners to introduce the beer to consumers.

Indigenous beverage company launches Wattleseed Lager

Beer made with seeds from Australia’s floral emblem will be launched as the second product of an indigenous beverage company following the release of its green ant gin earlier this year.

Something Wild Beverages will officially release its Wattleseed Lager at an event in Darwin on July 4. The beer has been brewed in the Adelaide Hills in partnership with Mismatch Brewing Company.

The wattleseed is roasted and milled before being added to the brew towards the end of the mash.

Adding wattleseed to brews is not new, with other examples including Woolshed Brewery’s Judas the Dark from South Australia and the Coca-Cola owned Aus Beer Co’s Wattle Seed Ale.

Mismatch Brewing works in collaboration with Adelaide Hills Distillery and Hills Cider Company. The group’s Toby Kline said a few kegs of the Wattleseed Lager were already being poured at craft beer bars in Sydney.

He said wattleseed’s subtle nutty aroma and hints of chocolate and coffee when roasted were well suited to the brewing process.

“It’s a really crisp, clean lager with some secondary characteristics of honey and toasted peanuts on the back end,” he said.

“There’s a lot of interest in it but it’s very early days for the product.

“It’s currently a tap offer only but we’ll be going to a packaged format soon.”

Wattleseed has been part of the diet of indigenous Australians for thousands of years and was traditionally ground into a flour.

Adelaide-based Something Wild Beverages is a division of native food company Something Wild Australia, which specialises in sustainably sourced indigenous foods such as kangaroo, wallaby, magpie goose, native herbs and fruits.

Something Wild is majority owned by famous Northern Territory Australian rules football family the Motlops and is committed to promoting the ethical, sustainable and permitted use of native Australian ingredients.

The Wattleseed Lager launch at Skycity Darwin on July 4 will coincide with the Northern Territory launch of Something Wild Beverages.

“As an Indigenous-owned company it’s great to be able to come home and show people how we’re shaking up the Australian food and beverage industry,” said Managing Director and part-owner Daniel Motlop.

“By working with traditional land-owners we can create opportunities and outcomes for the Indigenous communities who not only harvest products, but also hold a wealth of knowledge about how to use them.”

Something Wild Beverages teamed up with Adelaide Hills Distillery in February to launch Australian Green Ant Gin, which features a “pinch” of green ants in each bottle in the same way worms are used in tequila to provide the finishing touch.

Mismatch brews out of the same facility as Adelaide Hills Distillery and Kline said more Something Wild beverages were on the way.

“If we can get them out before the end of the year that would be good but the demand for the Green Ant Gin has been quite high and hopefully the lager will go quite well,” he said.

“The satisfying thing about the gin is that most people said it was going to be a gimmick but the actual liquid inside the bottle is of such a high quality that it is ensuring it keeps going and we have also have that commitment to sourcing native botanicals using the permit system.

“Mismatch Brewing and Adelaide Hills Distillery are soon to commission their new plant so we should have plenty of capacity to start playing and creating some more beverages then.”


Automation and craft beer making

In recent years the craft beer industry has grown to become a competitive $160m industry, with brewers now turning their attention to exports.

When an industry gets competitive, players look around for ways to grow and get ahead of the competition. Automation can play a major role in lifting production and increasing profits for the brewers in this segment.

According to Mark Emmett, Managing Director of HMPS, craft brewers have traditionally been sceptical about automation and weary of the costs. “The fact remains craft beer is a labour of love and automation means more distance between the brewer and his beer” he said.

However, to grow market share and remain competitive, automation needs to be considered.

While it is seldom that any craft brewer would go all out on automation in one go, the stages need to be investigated and engaged. HMPS specialises in packaging and understands that a craft brewer is a different breed of customer all together. A noticeable trend is to start small with bottling conveyers and capping machines and work up to case packer and palletisers.

The degree of automation often depends on the size of the craft brewery.

For all sizes, consistency is a primary goal. Fewer brewers always leads to higher consistency because there’s less chance for human error. In smaller breweries, consistency comes with the nature of the job as a limited number of refined experts have control over the process. But as breweries grow, automation enters the picture to maintain this consistency and reduce how many hands touch the product.

“The ideal is that we grow the automation as the business grows. We are very happy to meet with craft brewers and provide automation advice by doing a study of their current production facilities. We would be able to provide them with output speeds and productivity improvement figures so that they are able to measure the level of profitability they may achieve using various case scenarios” said Emmett (pictured).

HMPS is able to repurpose old machines, integrate existing machines into new systems and sometimes even sell old machines. The company specialises in bespoke solutions so the automation is scalable according to the customer’s requirements. Furthermore, they offer maintenance on machinery, even if it is not their own product.

“The planning phase has become longer because machines need to have the longevity to cope with consumer demands and future growth. For example, a brewer may be packing bottles today but when they move into an export market they may need to change over to cans,” said Emmett.

“And then we understand that whether it is a bottle or a can, there are various sizes and packaging materials and configurations to consider. We spend more time with the customer working out the various scenarios and possible configurations, and designing to accommodate these.

“Consumers are driving manufacturing. Manufacturers are responding to consumer demands at a more rapid pace, and machines need to keep up with these changing demands.”

HMPS is a wholly owned Australian company which specialises in the design, development and manufacturing of high quality machinery for packaging processes. The company serves customers across all industries.

Starting out as a result of the key wine industry in South Australia, the company designed and developed the first Bag in Box machinery back in the eighties and has since grown to offer case packers, RSC, palletisers, carton erectors and sealers, pick and place applications and specialised robotic solutions.

HMPS can offer innovative and specialised machinery which has been adapted to the client’s unique requirements.

“Through our extensive experience in the design and manufacturing of packaging machinery, not just for the locally but also the international market, we are able to advise customers on tried and tested methods to ensure the smooth operation of their business,” said Emmett.

HMPS will be exhibiting at the CBIA Craft Brewers Conference in the Adelaide Convention Centre from 25 – 27 July 2017.


Independent beer makers give big brewers the boot

Australia’s small and independent brewers have voted overwhelmingly to removing large brewers from the membership of their trade body.

In addition, the body which until known has been called The Craft Beer Industry Association, has been renamed the Independent Brewers Association.

The body said in a statement that the move is intended to create a body that is better placed to address the challenges faced by small brewers in Australia.

Under new rules for what was the Craft Beer Industry Association, membership will be prohibited for brewers that are more than 20 per cent owned by large brewers or other businesses that hold significant brewery holdings in Australia or overseas.

Previously the association had allowed membership by companies such as Little Creatures, Malt Shovel and Mountain Goat, all of which are 100 per cent owned by global brewing concerns.

“This is a great day for our association and for small, independent breweries in Australia,” said Independent Brewers Association chair, Peta Fielding.

“Our industry is a shining light in Australian manufacturing.  There are now more than 400 small, independent brewing businesses, up from just 200 when the association began five years ago.  The industry directly employs more than 2100 people and generates an estimated $655 million in economic output.”

Not everybody involved in the industry welcomed the move.

Chuck Hahn, a master brewer at Lion which owns Little Creatures and Malt Shovel, told the SMH he finds big versus small debate curious.

“If we measure brewers by their scale, and they need investment to achieve that scale, what message are we sending them – if drinkers love your beer and you grow as a result, are you are no longer a legitimate brewer?,” he said. “We believe it is short-sighted for the craft sector to be squabbling among ourselves. We should be working together to build craft in Australia – feeding off one another’s success as we always have done – rather than confusing beer drinkers into thinking ownership structure has any impact on the quality of what they’re drinking.”

Adelaide brews up huge craft beer week

Adelaide will be at the centre of the craft beer galaxy in July when the South Australian capital hosts five major brewing events in the same week.

The events kick off on Tuesday, July 25, with brewery tours and a three-day trade expo at the Adelaide Convention Centre. The two-day Australian Craft Brewers Conference, also at the convention centre, begins on Wednesday the 26th and culminates with the Craft Beer Awards at Adelaide Oval in the evening of Thursday the 27th.

The Royal Adelaide Beer & Cider Awards
presentation will begin the three-day Adelaide Beer & BBQ Festival on Friday July 28.

In its third year, the Adelaide Beer & BBQ Festival will run from July 28-30 at the Adelaide Showground and includes the largest and most diverse lineup of brewers and cider makers ever assembled in South Australia.

More than 60 beer and cider brands will headline the main beer hall and the ‘ABBF IPA Soundsystem’ will have 20 rotating IPA taps pouring beers that have never been seen on tap in South Australia, some never in the country.

The BBQ side of the festival will be headlined by larger than life Canadian Chef Matty Matheson, while Regurgitator, Hockey Dad and Ali Barter will pump out the tunes across the three days.

Event director Gareth Evans said having the festival in the same week as the national craft beer conference and awards in Adelaide was a great chance to boost the event’s profile.

“This year ABBF has a huge opportunity to show its wares as a festival and
the brewing industry in SA as a whole, on a national scale,” he said.

“We have really amped up the event and can’t wait to show it off in July.”

More than 400 brewers from around Australia are expected to attend the Australian Craft Brewing Conference. It is the first time the event will be held in Adelaide and will feature renowned brewer, academic, teacher and author Charles Bamforth as its keynote speaker.

Known as the “Pope of Foam”, Dr Bamforth is a statesman of the international brewing industry after a distinguished career as an academic.

Dr Bamforth is also editor in chief of the Journal of the American Society of Brewing Chemists, is on the editorial boards of several other journals and has published innumerable papers, articles and books on beer and brewing.

His recent scientific contributions have included the third of a six-part series on beer quality titled Freshness.

The conference program has two streams: the business of beer; and brewery operations. The trade expo sits alongside the conference and is the only one of its kind dedicated to servicing the Australian beer industry.

South Australia has a flourishing craft beer scene of more than 40 brewers and is home to Pirate Life, Prancing Pony and arguably Australia’s first craft brewery, Coopers.

It prides itself as being the “flavour state”, is the main supplier of barley and is a rich source of artisan produce.

Craft brewers from those in the start-up stage to more established national set-ups will be catered for at the CBIA conference. Different business models will be examined and there will be a big focus on ways to maintain quality through growth.  The trade expo continues to grow in reputation and this year will be the largest yet with more than 50 exhibitors representing the entire brewing supply chain.

The Craft Beer Awards will be presided over by 40 of Australia’s best judges who will sample more than 600 of the nation’s finest brews.

James Boag introduces Epicurean beer range

James Boag has introduced James Boag Epicurean, a limited edition and Australian-first beer offering, crafted for premium dining.

The premium range features two varieties, James Boag Epicurean RED and James Boag Epicurean WHITE.

Inspired by Tasmania’s epicurean culture, the bespoke beer range is co-created by chef and owner of Aria Matt Moran, sommelier Matt Dunne and Boag’s head innovation brewer Simon Hanley.

Intended to accompany red meat dishes, such as wood oven roasted standing ribs or a shoulder of lamb with caramelised onion, Epicurean RED is full flavoured, and amber in colour. The specialty malts selected give a rounded, fuller mouth feel.

In contrast, the floral and fruity aroma and notes of the WHITE are intended for lighter dishes, evoking images of charcoal-barbecued fresh seafood such as Moreton Bay bug, lobster or Tasmanian trout.

“Working with experts in the Australian food sphere, such as Matt Moran and Matt Dunne, allowed us to bring the unique characteristics and finest quality Tasmanian ingredients together in a way that’s not been explored until now,” said Hanley.

“Wine has been lucky to be the natural drink of choice when it comes to fine dining. With the James Boag Epicurean range designed specifically to complement the fine dining experience we’re excited to now see how Epicurean evolves the gastronomical experience for the modern man.”

James Boag Epicurean is launching for a limited three-month availability in a selection of hatted restaurants across Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Tasmania.


Bob Hawke launches his own beer

Former Prime Minister Bob Hawke, who famously once held the world record for downing a yard glass, has unveiled a beer bearing his own name.

Hawke’s Lager made its debut yesterday at the Clock Hotel in Sydney’s Surry Hills and the 87 year-old Labor Party stalwart had the honour of pouring the first beer.

“How’s that for a pour?” Hawke said as he did the honours. “A lovely beer.”

As Good Food points out, the beer was the brainchild of Nathan Lennon and David Gibson who came up with the idea during their time working in a New York Advertising agency.

According to Lennon, it all happened on Australia Day. “It was minus 5 degrees outside. We were getting homesick and we realised all our friends were back home having nice cold beer in the sun. So we started talking about who we’d most like to have a beer with and we landed on Bob Hawke,” he said.

Hawke agreed to the project on the provision that his share of the profits be donated to Landcare, Australia’s largest environmentally-focused movement.

The brew itself contains 4.5% ABV and is brewed with all-Australian ingredients. According to the brewer’s website, it has a subtle citrus aroma, light bitterness and a gentle dry finish.

Right now, it can be purchased from 11 pubs across Sydney and Newcastle. However, it will be rolling out to the rest of Australia throughout 2017.

Cricketers Arms launches mid-strength craft beer

Cricketer’s Arms has added Session Ale to its line-up, a 3.5 per cent ABV ale for consumers seeking a mid-strength craft beer that doesn’t compromise on taste.

Available on and off premise from April, the beer joins the the brewer’s other offerings: Keeper’s Lager, Spearhead Pale Ale and Scorcher Summer Ale. Session Ale is available in 6 x 4 375ml cans and is an evolution of the can design currently in the market.

“Session Ale proves that your beer doesn’t need to be high strength to taste good, with the 3.5% ABV tasty as ever,” said Hamish McArthur, Cricketers Arms Brewer.

“With an IBU of 26, this refreshing ale is hoppy but not especially bitter, balanced with full malt character from three malts and three hops, including our Cricketers Arms signature Amarillo hops.”

Cricketers Arms is brewed in Melbourne and was created 10 years ago by Paul Scott as a tribute to his father. As a boy, Scott would watch on as his father played cricket and shared beers with the opposing team post- match.

“Session Ale will help continue the growth of both the craft beer and mid- strength categories, by providing a consumer preferred full flavoured beer,” said Sarah Wilson, Brand Manager – Beer, Asahi Premium Beverages.

“For retailers, it introduces a greater range of craft mid-strength offers, which will increase penetration of the segment and at the same time trade shoppers up into a higher dollar per litre brand.”

Coopers facing boycott over marriage equality video [VIDEO]

South Australian brewer Coopers is facing a boycott following the release of a video in which two Liberal MPs debate the issue of marriage equality.

The video, entitled “Keeping it Light”, was released by the Bible Society. It features Liberal MPs Andrew Hastie and Tim Wilson delivering their opposing views on the issue.

Wilson, who is gay, supports marriage quality. Hastie takes the opposing view and says marriage should be exclusively between a man and a woman.

The two politicians, along with a ‘moderator’ Matt Andrews, are filmed holding bottles of Coopers Light and, at the end of the video, agree to keep things “light on a heavy topic”.

As the Huffington Post reports, several pubs and clubs including Melbourne’s Sircuit Nightclub and The Old Bar, as well as Sydney’s Hollywood Hotel and Newtown Hotel have condemned the video.


‘Keeping it light’ from Bible Society Australia on Vimeo.


According to, Sircuit destroyed its stock of Coopers products.

“What Coopers products that were available in Sircuit, have been removed,” said General Manager of Sircuit, Chris Driscoll.

“Actually I threw them out. Sircuit and Mollies, like beer companies, have choices. I have made mine. If Coopers wish to discuss, they have my number.”

However, despite the presence of its products in the video, Coopers has denied involvement.

“We want you to know that Coopers did not give permission for our Premium Light beer to feature in, or ‘sponsor’ the Bible Society’s ‘Keeping it Light’ video featuring Andrew Hastie and Tim Wilson,” the company said in a statement.

The Bible Society backed the claim.

“It’s true that they didn’t sponsor the video, no money changed hands, they weren’t consulted, that was entirely the Bible Society’s work,” CEO Greg Clarke told ABC News Breakfast.

Celebrating 10 years of craft beers

The Canberra Craft Beer & Cider Festival, taking place on Saturday 18 March, is set celebrate its 10th anniversary.

Running from 11am – 6pm in the grounds of the heritage Mercure Canberra, the event will feature breweries from across Australia along with live bands, food, entertainment and kids’ activities.

The festival is recommended for all beer and cider enthusiasts – from beginners to budding craft brewers. Over 100 beers and ciders will be available for tasting and visitors will be able to take part in beer/cider food matching sessions, hear guest speakers, and meet the brewers.

Breweries exhibiting will include the multi-award winning Sydney Brewery, Thatchers, Little Creatures, Dad and Dave’s Brewing, Stone Dog Meadery, Yenda, Hope Estate Beer Co and many others from across Australia.

This year, the Festival will help raise funds for ACT Cancer Support, a locally based organisation that currently provides support for 950 patients.

Brazilian-inspired Anheuser-Busch InBev earnings drop causes concern

It seems beer drinking is on the nose as the world’s biggest beer maker suffers its first profit decline in its decade-long history. 

Stock prices for the world’s largest brewer Anheuser-Busch InBev fell as much as 3.3 per cent as the company’s fourth-quarter results missed estimates at almost all levels with the Belgium-based beer maker continuing to struggle with a slump in its key market of Brazil.

It’s “another shocker, but that’s the trough,” wrote Eamonn Ferry, an analyst at Exane BNP Paribas told the Denver Post. “We had feared the worst this quarter, and so it is. There may well be an element of kitchen-sinking here.”

Spending power in Brazil, AB InBev’s largest market after the U.S., is nosediving amid record rates of unemployment, leading to a decline in AB InBev’s market share and a 33 per cent drop in earnings in that country.

The maker of well-known brands such as Stella Artois and Budweiser maintained its final dividend at 2 euros a share and warned that growth in such payments will be modest as it tries to curtail its $USD108 billion debt.

As the Wall Street Journal has noted, “a stale beer market leaves the investment case for Anheuser-Busch InBev, which brews seven of the top 10 global brands, heavily reliant on cost savings. Yet reviving interest in the drink is crucial in the long run.”


Australia’s first lentil beer sure to have pulses racing

AUSTRALIA’S first lentil beer has been released by a craft brewery in the Adelaide Hills.

Lobethal Bierhaus’ Lentil Pale Ale was launched this week following an approach by pulse processor AGT Foods.

Only about 3500 bottles and two kegs are part of the first run but the brewery sees it as a first step towards producing a gluten free craft beer.

Whole and diamond cut red lentils with grey seed coats are used as an adjunct and are milled with the with the grain at the rate of 30 per cent lentils, 70 per cent barley.

Lobethal Bierhaus Head Brewer and Owner Alistair Turnbull although the lentils did not produce fermentable sugars, they added mouthfeel, head retention and flavour to the beer.


“I would describe it as a fairly earthy flavour that we’ve balanced with local hops that matches with it. But we’ve also tried to make sure that we haven’t made it overly bitter or hoppy so it hides the lentil flavour,” Turnbull said.

The brew follows a collaboration between AGT Foods’ Canadian parent company and Rebellion Brewing Company in Regina, Saskatchewan, to brew a Lentil Cream Ale.

“They put me in touch with the Canadian brewery to pass on some of their research and the beer we released yesterday was the result of that,” Turnbull said.

“I’m already really impressed with how it behaves. What it does for the beer is fantastic.

“The guys from the Rebellion Brewing Company in Canada came here yesterday as well and they were quite impressed with it, they said it tasted great.”

Lobethal Bierhaus opened in 2007 in the Adelaide Hills town of Lobethal, about 40km east of the South Australian capital Adelaide. It includes a bespoke Malthouse (one of the very first of its kind in Australia), an all grain microbrewery (brew length 1200 litres), cellar door and restaurant.

Turnbull said the brewery’s ability to malt its own grain meant a further collaboration with AGT Foods to source sorghum or a similar grain to produce a full-flavoured gluten free product was a real possibility.

“There’s a lot of people out there who are coeliacs and they’d like to drink craft beer but they can’t,” he said.

“A lot of the beers that are gluten free tend to be more mainstream as opposed to full flavour so there’s a bit of a window there and it’s something that I’ve always wanted to do.

“I’m getting a huge amount of interest from that perspective.”

AGT Foods South Australian Business Manager Hayden Battle said as far as he was aware, the Lentil Pale Ale was the first beer in Australia to use lentils.

He said the company approached Lobethal Bierhaus because they wanted to use the product as a marketing tool for AGT Foods and the broader Australian Pulse industry.

“Most people like beer so it was a good opportunity to use that to our advantage,” he said.

“The majority of pulses produced in Australia are exported to be consumed overseas so if we can place the spotlight on pulses in some small way then it’s probably a good project that’s a bit of fun.”

“We’ve had discussions around creating a gluten free beer and we’re trying to source some white sorghum out of our New South Wales plant that Alistair can play around with.

“Perhaps we can also look at doing something with fava beans or chick peas in the future.”

This article first appeared in The Lead.


Rocks Brewing releases Nectarine Wit Bier

Rocks Brewing has released a new beer, namely the Conviction Series Seasonal Nectarine Wit Bier.

Originally made in Belgium’s regional areas, Witbier is believed to date back to the 1400s. The soil in these areas was rich and agrarianism was strong with farmers growing crops of barley, wheat and oats, all of which were used to brew traditional Witbiers.

This style of beer is readily open to interpretation and the company has gone to work on crafting an intriguing new take on this historical beer.

A traditional Belgium Witbier is brewed using at least 50 per cent wheat and often oats in the grist. Utilising state of the art mash filter, this new Nectarine Witbier is brewed using 75 per cent wheat, along with oats that lend the beer a beautiful creamy texture and dry finish.

Straying from tradition and adding to the intrigue and complexity of the beer, fresh nectarines have been added throughout the brewing process along with a selection of spices including coriander, ginger & all spice. As a result, this brew is a fruity, tart, spicy, light and intricate thirst quencher.

This beer is a live ale with yeast and fruit present in the cask, the beer will evolve over time heading from fresh and fruity to a more tart almost sour and funky beer, a beer that is ever refreshing yet keeps the drinker thinking and engaged.

Appearance: Pale straw with an almost milky haze and a tight white head.

Aroma: A clove and star anise style spice with sweet nectarine lingering.

Flavour: Initial nectarine sweetness finishing dry and tart.

Alcohol: 4.4 per cent abv

Doctors call for end to alcohol sponsorship of cricket

The Royal Australasian College of Physicians (RACP) is calling for an end to alcohol sponsorships in cricket, with currently more than 20 alcohol-related sponsorships in cricket across Australia.

The RACP is concerned about the impact alcohol promotion has on young cricket fans – a sentiment backed by the majority of Australians, with 61 per cent concerned about the exposure of children to alcohol promotions in sport.

RACP Paediatrics & Child Health Division President, Dr Sarah Dalton, says it’s unacceptable that young children are being bombarded with alcohol promotion both at the ground and at home watching on TV.

“It is time for a national conversation to discuss how big brewers are using sport as a channel to market their product, leaving our children as the collateral damage,” explained Dr Dalton. “It is happening in too many Australian sports and it needs to stop.

“These promotions normalise alcohol, with Australian kids getting the message that alcohol is an important part of socialising and sports,” said Dr Dalton.

“During one of the VB ODI games, I urge you to keep a tally of how many times you spot an alcohol ad or logo, either at the ground, on a player’s shirt, or in an advert on TV – I’m sure the number would surprise and shock you.

“Sadly, we know this type of marketing leads children and adolescents to start drinking earlier and makes young drinkers prone to binge drinking patterns.

Dr Dalton also criticised the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) who she says need to do more to ensure children are protected during sports broadcasts.

“Sports are the only programs allowed to broadcast alcohol advertisements before 8:30pm, on weekends and public holidays, at times when children are most likely to be watching television. Because of this it’s estimated that children under the age of 18 are exposed to 50 million alcohol advertisements each year.

“As a paediatrician, I am interested in finding out why this is allowed to happen. The ACMA needs to step up, remove this loophole, and help protect Australian children from alcohol promotion.”

Dr Dalton encouraged Cricket Australia and the ACMA to review the RACP’s Alcohol Policy, which calls for national, comprehensive, evidence-based strategies to combat the harms of alcohol.



Riverland craft beverages on show at Rivafest


A revitalized Rivafest will be held on the banks of the Murray River in Renmark this Saturday 14th January.

The event previously held throughout the day will take on a new time format under the stars (from 5pm until 11pm), and will provide an opportunity for visitors and locals to soak up the relaxed, laid back Riverland atmosphere, whilst  savouring the flavours of the Riverland and enjoying the entertainment.

Beer, wine, gin, ciders, expresso martinis, scotch, hard lemonade are just some of the beverages that will be available on the day, along with a huge range of food including yabby paella, Riverland tasting platters, Locally grown wattleseed Pavlova, Flat iron steak burger with Woolshed Brewery Amazon Ale marinade, goat pie, rabbit pie and more.

The Rivafest 2017 entertainment line-up includes the acoustic sounds of local duo Luke & Kassie Heuzenroeder to kick start the evening followed by 2011 X-Factor Runner-up, Andrew Wishart and Adelaide band (former locals) ‘McKenzie’.

Fireworks will also take place at 9.30pm from the river and will light up the balmy summer night sky.

“The timing of the event was brought forward to provide an opportunity for the boutique craft beverages and caterers of the Riverland to showcase their produce during the peak tourism time,” said Director of Corporate and Community Services, Tim Vonderwall. “Moving Rivafest into the cool of the evening will also enable visitors, and locals alike, to experience the Riverland by day and night.”


Cold Logic secures refrigeration contract with Coopers Brewery

Adelaide-based refrigeration firm Cold Logic has won a $3.5 million contract to supply and install a new refrigeration plant at Coopers Brewery’s new Regency Park malting plant.

The $63 million malting plant is the largest single item of capital expenditure in Coopers’ history and is expected to open late in 2017.

Three new compressor packages – designed and assembled at Cold Logic’s Port Adelaide factory – form part of a water chilling system that will circulate five million litres of water daily to regulate the temperature at the plant.

Three high efficiency screw compressors with 300kW motors, which each weigh three tonnes, provide 3750kWr of cooling to chill the water to 6 degrees Celsius.

The high performance system will minimise the energy required to product the malt and will utilise environmentally-friendly refrigerant ammonia which has no greenhouse warming potential and no impact on the ozone layer.

Cold Logic Partner, Mr Eddie Lane, said the major project was the latest in the long-term relationship between the two South Australian companies.

“We have been a trusted supplier to Coopers for more than 30 years,” he said.

“Cold Logic was instrumental in the design and installation of the refrigeration plant at Coopers’ Regency Park facility when they relocated from Leabrook.

“Typically, refrigeration makes up 40 to 60% of a brewery’s energy use. We are passionate about helping Coopers to overcome higher energy costs and improve their efficiencies.

“We’re pleased to be involved in such a significant project for one of the state’s biggest brands.”

Coopers Managing Director, Dr Tim Cooper, said the new malting plant would produce approximately 54,000 tonnes of malt a year, with two thirds available for export.

“The new plant will guarantee the long-term supply of high-quality malt for our future growth,” he said.