The magazine for the professional brewing industry
Brewers J o u r n a l
July~August 2018 | Volume 4, issue 6 ISSN 2059-6669
manchester, london, the world. tHE ukâ€™S HOTTEST BREWERY ON THE ROAD AHEAD
18 | john keeling - his debut piece on sticking together
49 | OFF TRADE: GET THE RIGHT LICENSE FOR YOUR BUSINESS
56 | GRAIN BREWERY: growth in norfolk and beyond
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le ad e r
Let’s appreciate what we have
he beer industry offers up parallels with a wealth of sectors though none more so, in my opinion, than the music scene. Consumers develop an attachment with breweries and brands. Beer is still a commodity in the eyes of the many, but it’s also something reliable, something reassuring. Music can offer that same enjoyment, that same comfort. People become fans of bands and artists, grow with them on their journey and are invested in their output, for better or worse. It can be a challenge then when the group you adore move from playing to 300 people at £15 a ticket to five or ten thousand and you’re charged upwards of £50 for the privilege. That’s where the music analogy falls down slightly, though. When a band gets increased airtime, coupled with commercial pressures from their label, the familiar outfit you could see every couple of months move somewhat out of reach. But when independent breweries are coveted by big beer, followed by acquisitions, investment and partnerships, that company’s beer ends up reaching a far wider audience and is more readily available as a result. Local radio is out the window and you’re now looking at BBC Radio 1 primetime slots. The big time. But instead of rising gig prices, you have that brewery’s beer coming down in price as it hits supermarket shelves. Many independent bottle shops will understandably stop selling that brewery’s beers, as is their prerogative. But there is still that hope, in the long run, that the increased visibility of good beer in big retail will bring more people into the independent space and not exclude them. There’s also the common preconception that as that brewery’s beer is produced at far higher volumes, the quality comes down. That the premium ingredients used previously are shipped out for cheaper alternatives. This happens, of course, but not always. Ask anyone that has enjoyed Camden Town’s Hells or Pale recently and they'll tell you they’ve never tasted better.
It was unsurprising then to see all of these concerns come to a fore when London’s Beavertown confirmed what had been rumoured for months, that Heineken was taking a stake in the business. Time will tell how that relationship develops but for now, wider availability of great beer, for most at least, has to be a good thing. I know what I’d sooner see on tap in a city pub where options were previously slim, to say the least. And the success of such breweries should be celebrated, too. From a consumer’s perspective, the UK beer scene has never been so healthy and vibrant. A couple of week’s ago you could have been enjoying beers from 40 of London’s finest at the excellent London Brewers Alliance festival. Or perhaps you were checking out the superb new setup at By The River Brew Co in Newcastle from the inimitable Dave Stone and the team behind Wylam Brewery. Regardless how much attention you pay ratings and reviews sites, there’s also no denying the quality of breweries such as Cloudwater and the beer they’re putting out. And to be cited as the second best brewery on the planet is an incredible achievement. It was insightful to have spent time with Paul Jones and the team in Manchester recently. So let’s enjoy what we’ve got. Fantastic breweries, access to great beer like never before and an everincreasing and improving number of taprooms to enjoy them in. Tim Sheahan Editor
co ntac t s
s tu A si M 2 Vi PP G3 at nd a St
IF YOU’VE GOT THE BOTTLE
contacts Tim Sheahan Editor email@example.com +44 (0)1442 780 592 Jim Robertson Head of sales firstname.lastname@example.org +44 (0)1442 780 593 Josh Henderson Sales executive email@example.com +44 (0)1442 780 594 Jon Young Publisher firstname.lastname@example.org Reby Media 42 Crouchfield, Hemel Hempstead, Herts, HP1 1PA, UK
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co nte nt s
Cover story 32 - Paul Jones, co-founder and managing director at Cloudwater, on educating the consumer, meeting their expectations and promoting modern UK beer
COMMENTS 16 - Aesseal on the hidden risk of contamination 19 - Portman Asset Finance talk growth 23 - Kemtile give the lowdown on flooring 26 - Kilfrost place the focus on heat transfer
DEAR JOHN 28 - In the first of a new series, John Keeling, global ambassador at Fuller's, stresses the need to stick together in the brewing industry
insight | the off trade 49 - Law firm TLT on what factors to consider when setting up an off-licence facility
insight | glassware 52 - A look at how premium glassware can elevate your brewery's branding
meet the brewer | grain 56 - How Norfolk's Grain Brewery has taken a slow and steady approach to business
Brewers Lectures 30 - The full lowdown on Brewers Lectures Bristol, taking place on 13 September, 2018
the big issue | event planning 61 - The hurdles, and opportunities, events can offer your brewery
focus | kegs 44 - When is it worth investing in a keg fleet, and when are one-way kegs the way to go? We speak to the businesses behind them
science 64 - QCL talk dry-hopping and sugars 68 - Parker on microbial stabilisation
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n e ws
Beavertown to sell stake to Heineken
orth London-based Beavertown is selling a stake of its business to Heineken.
Beavertown has accepted a £40m funding injection
“It’s been front and centre of all our discussions and why I’m confident the partnership will give us the ability to make our beers even better.
from Heineken, a move that will enable the business
“The dreams I had in the kitchen have exploded
to push ahead with its plans to open a new 450,000hl
beyond all proportions. I truly believe this is a magical
time within our industry and I want to give Beavertown
The stake Heineken will take in the business remains undisclosed, but Beavertown founder Logan Plant, and his wife Bridget will remain majority shareholders. The company expects the new site, when fully operational, to employ up to 150 people while its current
and its team the opportunity to take our beers and their experiences as far and wide as possible.” He also stressed that the new partnership would result in job creation, rather than the loss of any positions. “Nothing will change within the business of
Tottenham site will allow for an expansion of its Tempus
Beavertown, other than the building of Beaverworld
which we hope will create up to 150 new jobs in London
Plant said the business spoke to a wealth of parties
and the UK over time. That number doesn’t include the
and groups throughout this last seven months, including
new jobs created throughout the bar division once that
crowdfunding, private equity and brewers.
gets up and running,” he said.
He said: “Crowdfunding for a £40m project wasn’t a realistic option. Private equity would have created too much external pressure to hit the return on investment in a short period of time.
Plant also added that there will be no pressure from Heineken to cut costs at Beavertown. He said: “This was one of the main objectives communicated throughout this whole process when
“I believe this could’ve created too much pressure
talking to all parties. They will have no influence on
for the brewery and thus perhaps lead us to making the
our brewing decisions, what we decide to do will be
wrong decision for our beer, our people and the direction
decided by us, for us. They are investing in Beavertown
for Beavertown to be even more Beavertown. Why would
Plant said ambition was the driving force behind opting for Heineken He added: “Heineken is a proud, independent global brewer but it also remains a family brewer. That family connection means they take a long-term view which
they come in and change what we have achieved to date, that is exactly why they are investing in us. For us to continue to create and improve what we do and how we do it across all areas of the brewery. "This is about taking our brewery, beers and people on
Bridget and I value. From the family through to every
a great journey, to push the boundaries of what we can
person I’ve met in the company, the passion for quality
achieve together and hopefully expand the beer market,
has been paramount.
getting more people drinking great beer.”
Head brewer Jeff Drew to retire
marketing initiatives across both the breweries. Jeff’s
passion and extensive knowledge are transferred into all eff Drew has retired as head brewer at Wychwood
of his work, and this has always been admired by both
and Ringwood Breweries, calling time after 16 years
colleagues and the general public alike.
at the helm. Drew, who has been integral to the success of many of the brewery's flagship beers, like Hobgoblin and Ringwood Razorback, will be suceeded by Jon Tilson. Drew honed his skills at Morland Brewery and took up the position of head brewer at Wychwood and Ringwood in 2002 and since then he has split his time between the two breweries. He is cited as the mastermind behind the creation of; Hobgoblin Gold, Ringwood Circadian, Oxford Gold amongst others, whilst most recently he has been managing the production and involved with numerous
Not to go out without a bang, Drew's involvement in the creation and launch of Hobgoblin’s first IPA has been the perfect ending to Jeff’s career. Throughout this time as part of Marston’s Beer Company, Jeff has been included in numerous projects and launches and created a real legacy. Drew said: “It’s bitter sweet to be leaving, I have had some amazing years at Ringwood and Wychwood where I have made memories that I will truly look back on with joy. "After 16 years I am sad to go, but I am excited to put my feet up and enjoy my retirement!”
n e ws
BUNDOBUST DEVELOPS NEW HOUSE BEERS AND EXPLORES ON-SITE BREWERY MODEL
ndian street food and craft beer restaurant business
allow for collaborative projects with breweries in the local
Bundobust has developed a new range of house beers
area, and beyond.
with Northern Monk. The company, which has sites in Leeds and Manchester, has collaborated with Northern Monk to produce three house beers. Bundobust has worked closely with the Leeds-based
“Beer and food is what we do. We have an amazing beer list, which we’re incredibly proud us and collaborations are something we’ve also enjoyed,” he said. Husak said: “The Bundobust journey started at the same time as Northern Monk’s and we’re good friends
brewery to create a house Pale Ale, a Mango pale and
with them, so it’s really rewarding to see Russell and
a revamped version of the duo’s popular Indian Witbier
the team go from strength to strength. There are lots of
collaboration, Bombay Dazzler.
parallels in what we’re both doing.”
A 4% Pale Ale will be complemented by a 5.5%
He added that the new core beers are only part of
Mango Pale Ale, which takes cues from Northern Monk’s
the company’s ever-increasing focus on growing its beer
7.2% Mango Lassi Heathen IPA. Artwork on each beer will
offering in it's restaurants..
be created by Drew Millward. The beers are expected to be brewed later this month or early in July, with all three becoming core mainstays at Bundobust restaurants. They’ll also be available in smallpack, too.
“The idea of certain future Bundobust restaurants having a small brewery on-site is something that really excites us,” Husak explained. “The UK isn’t quite there yet when it comes to giving beer and food pairings the respect they deserve, but
Bundobust is still developing plans for a Liverpool
we’re getting there. The worst thing a restaurant operator
site, and the company’s co-founder Marko Husak told us
can do is ignore the variety around them. That’s not what
that future restaurants could house an on-site brewery to
we’re about. It never has, and never will be.”
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n e ws
Magic Rock rebrands can range M agic Rock has redesigned its core can range to align the beers with its contemporary limited-
edition releases and confirmed it will discontinue its Rapture beer in canned format.
Richard Burhouse, managing director of Magic Rock, explained: “When we first introduced our 330ml cans onto the market in late 2015 we felt they were some of the boldest designs around and easy to spot on the shelf/in the fridge. We loved the colourful understated but recognisable character based designs which Rich Norgate had come up with. “As with the business (and life) in general our design has moved on since then and we felt it was time to bring the 330ml core can designs in line with the labelled can artwork which we’ve had such great feedback on. “There is so much fantastic artwork in beer now that we felt it was time for a slightly bolder look which would
we’ll still be producing Rapture for cask and keg but as I
stand out a bit more on the shelves/in the fridges.”
mentioned at the beginning, things move on, and the love
Burhouse added that he was excited that Saucery, which is the brewery's 3.9% Session IPA will join the lineup in the coming months. He added: “To make way for Saucery we’ve made the decision to drop Rapture from the core can line up,
Gas burner technology a boon for Long Man Brewery
for amber ales is just not there anymore. At least not in can anyway. “We still have some volume of Rapture cans to package but once they’re gone we won’t be packing anymore.”
the wort to 100°C where it is held in a rolling boil to an accuracy of +/- 1°C,” continues Simm. “Importantly, we can achieve this temperature target in
ast Sussex-based Long Man Brewery has cited
just one hour from cold to create an even distribution of
the benefits of gas burner technology as a positive
heat that eliminates the risk of scorching.”
impact on its business. The company turned to Lanemark Combustion
He points out that the operation of the Lanemark system also contributes to the brewery meeting hazard
Engineering for its TX30 burner system to assist in a key
awareness requirements as defined by HACCP (Hazard
part of its operation.
Analysis and Critical Control Points).
The rural location of Long Man Brewery pointed
“Our design enables Long Man Brewery simply to enter
towards propane for the gas supply which, following
a series of temperature set points via the adjacent control
assessment by the team, indicated significant cost
panel,” added Adrian Langford, Lanemark’s general
efficiencies compared to alternative energy sources.
manager. “The specification of the helical coil as the
The burner is mounted on the outside of a 20 barrel
heat exchanger is also significant as it helps to optimise
copper that is central to all brewing at the site and fires
the capacity of the copper to meet the desired brewing
through the wall into a helical coil heat exchanger.
volumes because it minimises intrusion into the vessel.”
“An external fan is connected to the end of the tube run that pulls the heat through the system and which, via alterations to its speed, enables us to achieve the control
The Long Man Brewery is clear about the factors that underpin the dramatic growth that it has achieved. “This is all in the context of our firm belief in using only
that we need,” continues Jamie Simm, director of brewing
sustainable methods – not least through our farm location
at the company.
and our own bore-hole – alongside a commitment to the
As the brewery has grown, the Long Man Brewery has
best, most reliable equipment,” continues Jamie Simm.
looked to undertake two brews per day, when required,
“The Lanemark burner system which was specified and
so the speed of heat-up has also become a particularly
installed for us via Johnson Brewing Design meets this
important factor. “The system raises the temperature of
latter need perfectly.”
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LERVIG ADDS TO CORE RANGE WITH HOUSE PARTY
ervig has expanded its core range in the UK with House Party, a new Citra-led Pale Ale.
Available via Cave Direct, the beer is designed to
make a great easy-drinking house pale ale, plugging the gap between the accessible core range and more experimental seasonal range that has produced some of the world’s best New England IPAs and Imperial Stouts. House party is brewed to be clean and robustly bitter with a healthy dose of grapefruity Citra and pineappleloaded BRU-1 hops making it a thirst quenching pale ale best drunk by the pint or straight from the can. Lervig head brewer Mike Murphy said: “We have long winters and short summers in Norway, where we often daydream of being on a island paradise. “But more often than not we just end up at a friend’s house party all night long and what we drink is House Party - super-clean malt allows the hops give their juicy/ tropical fruit flavours an unobstructed pathway to your palate. It comes in a can, and it’s completely crushable.” Neil Kitching, sales director at Cave Direct, added:
aroma we expect from hoppy Lervig beers. At this strength and price point it’s going to be a fantastic house
“We’re really impressed with how clean and drinkable
pour for both specialist craft beer bars and less beer-
House Party is, but it’s still got that signature juicy hop
focused pubs and bars.”
Sixpoint bolsters portfolio with new beers
ixpoint Brewery has unveiled two new limited edition beers, and an addition to its year-round range.
Imported through Heathwick, the new beers
represent the start of a new programme to release speciality, limited-edition numbers from Sixpoint every two to three months. The latest additions will be available alongside Sixpoint’s core range of The Crisp, Sweet Action, Bengali and Resin. Jammer is a 4% ABV Gose, described as a refreshing, tart brew balanced with a fruity coriander aroma and a touch of sea salt. Elsewhere, Righteous Ale is a 10.5% ABV Barrel-Aged Rye Ale produced with three types of rye malts and
styles in total giving the consumer a much greater
smoothed out in both Bourbon and Rye whisky barrels for
opportunity to enjoy their range of products.
a layered and complex beer with flavours ranging from spicy rye character to maple to vanilla. The new addition to its core range is Alpenflo, a 4.9% ABV Helles lager that features a clean, noble hop character from Tettnanger hops sourced from family farms in Bavaria. Graham Richardson, general manager at Heathwick,
"Sixpoint’s latest launch in the UK is the first in a series of new limited release beers that we will be introducing every two to three months, as well as continuing with the core range throughout the year.” Max Nevins, vice president of Marketing at Sixpoint, added: “"We’ve been sending over some of our favorite beers to the UK for years, but it’s awesome to be able
commented: “With the launch of the new speciality
to ship our limited beers over and show off the full,
styles, Sixpoint will be available in six high quality beer
b e e r
s h owc a s e
Fourpure launches Continental Collaboration
ourpure has launched a collaborative six-pack, Continental Collaboration, which it describes as its
most “exciting and challenging” brewing project to date. The initiative involved teaming up with six breweries
with Sunset Brew. Also included is Homage Dry Hopped Farmhouse Saison, a 5.5% ABV beer brewed with Brasserie De La Senne, 4.2% Nugget Session Pale Ale with Two Birds
each from a different major continent, including Africa,
Brewing and the 6.5% ABV Nor Cal IPA with Bear Republic
Asia, Australia, Europe, North America and South America.
Fourpure’s partner brewers include Devil’s Peak in
Daniel Lowe, co-founder of Fourpure, explained: “Over
South Africa, Kyoto Brewing in Japan, Two Birds Brewing
the last few decades, brewing has changed significantly
in Australia, Brasserie de la Senne in Belgium, Bear
across the globe. It’s an industry that transcends language
Republic Brewing Co in California, USA, and Sunset Brew
or geography, that brings people together professionally
and socially and increasingly it’s an industry that loves to
The beers included in the collaboration pack comprise Temple Satsuma & Seaweed Gose, a 4.0% ABV with Kyoto
share, teach and collaborate. “The Continental Collaboration series of beers will
Brewing Co, 6.0% Coastline Gooseberry & Vanilla Dry-
explore the unique stories born from history, heritage
Hopped Sour with Devil’s Peak Brewing Company and
and a sense of adventure that has led to innovation in
Nightfall Coconut & Chocolate Imperial Stout, a 9.0% ABV
brewing, spanning every major continent on Earth.”
ADNAMS LAUNCHES ALCOHOL-FREE GHOST SHIP
dnams, the Suffolk-based brewer and distiller, has launched a new alcohol free version of its best
selling beer Ghost Ship Pale Ale. According to the business, it has been created to meet the rapidly growing demand for low alcohol beer. Ghost Ship Alcohol Free went on general release from 1st June in 30litre keg, 500ml bottle and 330ml can. It is brewed with pale ale, rye crystal and cara malts, using
Adnams head brewer Fergus Fitzgerald explained, “Ghost Ship Alcohol Free is a quality beer that retains all the flavours of the original Ghost Ship but with almost all the alcohol removed. "There are various ways to create alcohol free beers, but most of the methods either involve changing the recipe, brewing methods, or altering the flavours. "We are using a very clever piece of kit that allows
Citra and a blend of other American hop varieties to
us to brew our Ghost Ship as normal but then send a
create bold citrus flavours.
batch to our brand new de-alcoholisation equipment.
According to the brewery, the beer has good
This uses reverse osmosis which removes most of the
assertive pithy bitterness with a malty backbone and
alcohol via a permeable membrane under pressure and
a lemon and lime aroma, uplifting any occasion. It also
a low temperature.
perfectly complements the aromatic tastes of Spicy Thai and Indian food. The beer boasts 21kcal per 100ml providing a low alcohol but "great tasting tipple".
"It’s all very high tech magic allowing our Ghost Ship to sail away free from alcohol but remaining full of its original flavours and aromas.” unveiled two new limited edition beers, and an addition to its year-round range."
C o mm e n t
Mechanical seals – the hidden risk of contamination Eliminating the risk of contamination, and compliance with industry regulations, is high on the agenda of every responsible drinks producer. Yet many pumps on brewery equipment could be fitted with mechanical seals made from potentially harmful materials. Paul Green, of Aesseal, explains how non-compliant seals can slip through the net and advises how non-compliance can be avoided.
100% traceable and a statement of compliancy must be clearly marked on its packaging. So how are potentially unsafe seals creeping into production lines which otherwise have highly stringent safety mechanisms in place? The answer lies in the complexity of source materials and supply chains, often compounded by lack of awareness, poor communication and simple force of habit. There are around 15 grades of carbon commonly used in the manufacture of mechanical seals, of which only a handful are compliant with Food and Drug Administration (FDA) standards. Of the remainder some are suited to chemical applications and don’t require FDA compliance, and finally there are antimony carbons, which are used in
by PAUL GREEN
the oil and gas industry and, put simply, are poisonous. These obviously should never be used anywhere
near a drinks supply chain and yet we have seen this
echanical seals are a small but
type of carbon on sites where the implications of it being
significant component of brewery
misapplied could be disastrous.
equipment, fitted to pumps at any point along the production line. They play a key role in sealing
rotating equipment to ensure machinery runs reliably and that the beverages being produced remain free of contamination. Yet despite this, there is a real lack of awareness of
These unsafe materials look exactly the same as a seal which is 100% traceable and compliant. They cannot be differentiated unless the seal’s traceability is clearly stated on its packaging. This can have serious implications. A brewery might have several mechanical seals and static sealing joints across its whole production line.
the implications of several pieces of legislation, including
And even a company that carries out stringent checks
the FCM regulation, which covers materials and articles
across production can be unaware that there is a point
intended to come into contact with food, and Regulation
of heightened contamination risk for every seal along
(EC) 2023/2006 on good manufacturing practices for
materials and articles intended to come into contact with consumables. As a result, mechanical seals manufactured from non-
Managers responsible for compliance with FDA and EU regulations don’t always share that information with operatives at the ‘repair and replace’ end of the
safe materials are routinely specified, risking contamination
production line. The need to keep production running
and creating a health and safety time bomb.
smoothly also means that when repairs are required, the
The regulations relating to mechanical seals in food and drink processes are clear: every component must be
focus is on being able to pick spare parts off the shelf swiftly rather than its compliance with industry standards.
c o mm e n t
ABUK are proud to have gained over 30 years’ experience supplying equipment and expertise to small, mid-sized and large breweries in the UK and abroad.
We focus on turn-key brewery installations to meet the needs of the customer, as well as the supply and installation of new and high quality used tanks and vessels across a range of industries.
While it might be accepted that component seals currently being imported into Europe from Asia have been produced from the lowest cost source, a purchasing department might be unaware that to achieve that low cost the product has often been through so many links in the supply chain that all traceability has been lost by the time it arrives at the end user. And no traceability means zero knowledge of the material the seal is made from. Brands who work with an external supplier to maintain their equipment can also find themselves dangerously far removed from compliance requirements, assuming - sometimes incorrectly – that the supplier has properly interpreted and implemented safety legislation. But Regulation EC1935/2004 is clear - if traceability is not evidenced on the packaging the seal carries no validity and should not be installed on a food and beverage production line.
ABUK has been instrumental in helping many of today’s successful brewers progress and grow their businesses.
Contact us to find out more about how ABUK can provide a solution for your business:
So how can brewers avoid these risks? The answer is blindingly simple - look at the label. And if the mechanical seal comes in packaging that doesn’t clearly state its source, do not install it on your pumps. The brewing industry can be rightly proud of its high levels of quality assurance and self-regulation. But we estimate that very few mechanical seals currently used on pumps across the whole food and drinks industry actually comply with the laws and regulations around traceability. We’re working to bolster awareness to drive change within the industry and close the knowledge gap around
THE BEER ENGINEERS
T (44) 01427 890099 E firstname.lastname@example.org www.advancedbrewing.co.uk Sole UK Agents for:
compliance. The contamination risk is very real but the legislation is clear and the solution is simple. There really should be no excuse to see non-compliant mechanical seals in brewing processes.
Advanced Brewing UK is a trading style operated by Advanced Bottling UK Ltd. Advanced Bottling UK Ltd is Registered in England and Wales. Company Registration Number: 02933257
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malt Chris Garratt, head Maltster . tel: 01985 212014 Chris.Garratt@warMinster-Malt.Co.uk
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Strategy for Growth Many new and established UK breweries struggle to gain access to the finance they need to get off the ground or expand. Rory Dunn, sales director at Portman Asset Finance, explains how asset finance can be a flexible solution – as well as an effective strategy for growth.
from the cost of buying an asset outright and preserves your working capital, freeing you up to invest in other areas of the business such as marketing or staff salaries. In my 11 years at Portman, I’ve seen first-hand that working capital is the lifeblood of a successful business. Assets should always work and pay for themselves. In my experience, people don’t tend to access asset finance until they really need it – I’d stress the value in thinking about it much earlier to cover your back and retain your cash.
by rory dunn
What kind of brewery companies can benefit from asset finance? Many start-ups and small-to-medium
established brewery and distillery businesses find it ideal
sset finance is a financial tool for business
because they can gain quick access to the top-of-the-
owners to secure a variety of key assets
range equipment and resources they need to grow. They
that can grow their company. You make
are also attracted to asset finance due to the flexible
fixed regular payments for the use of an
repayments on offer as well as the low rates, tax benefits
asset over an agreed period between 1-10
and the wide range of assets that can be funded.
years. Asset finance is now one of the most accessible and flexible sources of funding out there. If you need equipment to start up or expand your
What particular assets can be financed? More than what many people may imagine. We can fund any sort of asset, be it a traditional ‘hard’ asset such as machinery
business, then asset finance is ideal because you can
and vehicles to ‘soft’ assets like fermenting tanks, office
secure the funding against the asset itself. Use the right
equipment, furniture, air-con systems and IT software
product for the right purpose – loans are not linked to
packages such as Sage or Microsoft Dynamics.
assets, for example, and are best used for cashflow or
How easy is it to access asset finance, and how long
paying for anything unsecured. Payments on our lease
does the process take? Asset finance is extremely quick
finance agreements are also tax deductible, giving
and easy to access, although this often depends on how
customers further savings.
well positioned the provider is. For instance, a broker like
Why don’t businesses just pay for what they need
Portman is well placed to secure finance and move swiftly
in one lump sum? Companies need to retain cash for
because we have a broad spectrum of lenders at our
unforeseen circumstances that often arise in business, or
disposal, so we can offer varying rates and find the right
even seasonal dips in revenue. Asset finance saves you
deal for companies in a range of circumstances. We aim
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FI N AN C E
to move from initial contact to full activation of transaction
borrow? No one knows a business better than the
in as little as 24 hours.
owner(s). However, our experienced account managers
What specific options are there and how do they vary?
will often use their sector expertise to advise on any
At Portman we offer the following finance products: Lease
associated costs – such as import duty and VAT costs for
finance: Portman buy the asset and you use it over an
overseas purchases – that may arise in certain purchases
agreed contract period in return for monthly payments. At
to ensure customers get the best financial agreement for
the end of the agreement, you can choose to purchase
the asset for a small one-off fee, hand it back or continue
What common misconceptions are there about asset
to lease it. Rates from as little as 2.5% are available and
finance that you would like to set straight? It amazes
costs can be offset against tax.
me that there are still people who believe finance is just
Hire purchase: This is similar to a lease agreement
for people who can’t afford to buy. The reality is quite
in that it frees up working capital, however you are the
the reverse – asset finance is designed for ambitious,
purchaser. After all payments have been made, your
profitable companies who are looking to grow and reduce
business becomes the owner of the equipment, either
tax liabilities. Some people also think that going through
automatically or on payment of a final option to purchase
a broker to arrange asset finance is going to be more
expensive than approaching a lender directly. Because
Refinance: This allows you to release locked in equity
of the amount of business we complete with our panel of
from your assets. These unlocked funds can then be used
lenders, we get preferential rates for our customers so the
as you require.
overall cost is actually lower.
Commercial loan: This gives you the freedom to use
Can you help businesses that need to fund a variety of
the monies as you see fit, whether it’s consolidating
assets? Yes, we can tailor bespoke packages of finance
existing finance, growing your business or buying another.
products for customers. If they are starting a brewery
What advice would you give to brewery owners
business, for instance, we look at all the equipment, the
considering using asset finance for the first time to grow
premises fit-out including the flooring and furnishings,
their company? In the modern marketplace the brewery
the management software etc and break all that down to
sector is competitive, so you need to be the best in breed.
find the best lender for each component. There may be
Asset finance allows you to buy the top-specification
five different lenders making up one overall package for a
brewery equipment, conditioning tank or whatever it is
you need, rather than settling for what your cash reserves allow. Acquiring the best equipment sets you apart from your competitors. Do you advise business owners on how much to
What about businesses that experience quieter periods of the year? Can you help them? The beauty is the flexibility that allows each agreement to be tailored to the requirements of each business.
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STARTI N G
B R E WERY
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SPECIFYING A BREWERY FLOOR Before you invest in hygienic flooring and drainage for your brewery, there are a number of key issues you should focus on before making that all-important decision, explains Kemtile’s David Priest
Before you buy hygienic flooring and drainage for your brewery, read our top four tips to getting it right first time. If you’re laying a hygienic floor, make sure all aspects of the job are considered and tackled at the outset and at the same time. This includes civils work, drainage, covering and accessories such as kerbs, bollards and protective panels. The job is often bigger than the floor itself.
by david priest
For most of our brewery customers, flooring and drainage specification is often dictated by their lease
agreement, which usually stipulates that premises must
Kemtile. In the last few years we’ve worked with an ever-
deteriorates speeds up. Every day brewery traffic – such
increasing number of start-up brewers as well as those
as kegs, barrels, trolleys and trucks and equipment –
taking their next steps and expanding their facilities and
would also easily damage a concrete floor.
ecent figures show that the number of breweries in the UK has risen 64% in just
be left exactly as they were upon arrival. Premises typically have a concrete floor, which alone
five years to over 2,000. It’s a statistic
can’t withstand the demands of the rigorous brewing
based on HMRC data on companies that
process and its associated legislation. Its porosity means
have registered for beer duty – the highest
it absorbs spilt beer, which in turn can lead to microbial
number since the 1930s. It’s also a figure that is reflected in our projects at
therefore brewing capabilities. Whatever their size or age, the same first flooring
growth and poor hygiene. Add water and cleaning chemicals to the mix and the rate at which its surface
We install both fully vitrified ceramic tiles using the unique Kagetec vibration system and heavy duty Ucrete
principal applies to every brewery. Flooring really does
polyurethane resin from BASF – all complemented by
provide the foundation on which brewing success is built.
stainless steel Weidemann-Technik drainage systems. As
It’s often so much easier – and more cost effective – to
one of the few companies that installs all three solutions,
install a flooring system when brewing premises are
we’re enviably placed to advise customers on the
empty and equipment.
solution that will best suit their needs. This is sometimes
But we recognise that for many brewers – especially
a combination of all three to meet specific performance
those starting out – additional investment in a quality
and cost requirements, with both offering breweries an
hygienic floor just isn’t possible. Many of them come
excellent service life.
to when production and sales are increasing and they
Minimise the risk
can afford flooring to support their growth. We often help them take their next step, whether that’s into new, extended or refurbished premises. But even then, appointing the wrong installer can be costly. We’re frequently called in to put right jobs that have been specified and undertaken incorrectly or ‘cheaply’ and the end cost tends to be significantly more.
ccording to HSE statistics, slips, trips and falls continue to be a major cause of injuries in the workplace – resulting in a huge rise in personal
injury claims over recent years.
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The correct drainage and floor covering will avoid liquids ponding on the floor and provide appropriate slipresistance to help to reduce such accidents. We always
high temperatures and harsh chemicals used during the everyday cleaning process. Brewery floors must also have excellent drainage.
ensure that for surfaces that are prone to spillages,
We very often recommend long floor gulley drains -
flooring slip-resistance is higher than on dry areas.
installed along the centre with the floor finish laid to â€˜fallsâ€™. This helps prevent the puddling of waste liquids and its
Highest hygiene standards
subsequent hygiene, health and safety issues including micro bacterial growth. We recommend that hot liquids and chemicals are discharged directly into the drainage
s with all food and drink processing facilities, brewers must adhere to the highest hygiene standards. This means that brewery floors must
be food grade or food safe and able to withstand the
system rather than run over the floor finish. Each environment has its own specification requirements, so ensure that your flooring system partner has the right experience and expertise for your job.
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temperature control: Reducing cost With energy costs spiralling, the brewing industry has long been seeking a costeffective, efficient, and safe alternative to current heat transfer fluids. But it seems that for decades breweries setting up are forced to choose a fluid that is either toxic or one that has poor performance, explains Michael Reynolds, technical manager at Kilfrost.
risk, or removing risk and removing performance. Ethanol is alternative used by some, but it’s not particularly efficient and its low flash point brings a flammability risk. Or salt brines, which perform well but are corrosive to pipework and systems. For any brewery, ensuring the safety of your product should be front and centre of all considerations, given its intended consumption. That’s why we see so many opting for the safer option of a MPG-based fluid. Why would you take the risk?
by Michael reynolds
f you’re setting up a brewery, there really is very little choice when it comes to heat transfer. Working with the brewery industry, we found that start-ups were looking to find the most efficient glycol product possible, to bring about effective
cooling of fermentation tanks. But for breweries, keeping electricity costs to an
absolute minimum is absolutely crucial now, and also
he industry feedback we’ve had has highlighted that the choice of fluid available leaves a lot to be desired.
So we worked hard in the background to understand
what was on offer when brewers are choosing heat transfer fluid. We were approached by Pillars Brewery, based in
aligned with increasingly environmentally-friendly values
Walthamstow, which was looking for the most efficient
of many craft brewing companies.
glycol product to ‘crash cool’ their fermentation tanks.
The current status quo offers four choices of heat transfer fluids. Mono-ethylene glycol (MEG)-based heat transfer fluids primarily offer good physical properties and efficiency.
This was with the aim of cutting unnecessary electricity costs and in a bid to provide an environmentally-friendly solution. We then went into the lab and worked tirelessly to
But they are avoided as they are toxic, and so pose a risk
come up with something that would once and for all
to human health if there is incidental contact with items
provide a viable alternative to what’s currently out there.
intended for human consumption. The preferred alternative by many – mono-propylene
We knew we had to make a fluid that was non-toxic and more efficient than current fluids. So we produced
glycol (MPG) – is safer, but is far less efficient at
Kilfrost ALV Plus - highly efficient and formulated it with
transferring heat energy, particularly at low circulation
NSF approved organic acid technology inhibitors and
temperatures. Plant managers are stuck with managing
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Brewer and Pillars founder, Gavin Litton, commented: “Our pumps are working less hard, using less energy to circulate liquids around the plant, and we’ve been so impressed with the performance of the fluid. Not only does it save us money, but it means we’re as energyefficient and environmentally-friendly as possible. That’s at the heart of what we stand for as a brewery.”
Pumps under pressure
umps are the workhorse of your brewery, and any brewer will tell you that the viscosity and temperature performance of their heat transfer
fluid are a close second to its safety profile. Therefore operating pumping systems efficiently is the key to successful output. But beware - they can be prone to pressure drops, as the efficiency of any cooling fluid takes the strain. We developed our fluid to reduce the incidence of pressure drops across the system, as well as to reduce pumping costs and increase hydraulic efficiency. The knock on effect for new brewery systems of using an efficient fluid is that you don’t need such large, powerful pumps and heat exchangers.
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We need to stick together In the first of a new series, we’re proud to have John Keeling, the former head brewer of West London’s Fuller’s and now its global ambassador, write for us. ‘Dear John’ is the industry’s chance to delve into Mr Keeling’s thoughts on the issues, hurdles and opportunities that exist in the brewing sector today. In his debut comment, John argues that the need for leadership is greater than ever. That we need to stop dividing and instead, unite for the greater good.
by John Keeling
even if they are your friends, it still hurts. Also, supply is now much bigger than demand therefore competition is
am shortly to become a retired brewer. I have
I was talking to someone last week. They referred to
worked for a very big brewer (Watneys) and a
the British Brewing industry as a “basket case” because
small brewer (Fuller’s). It always amuses me when
nobody is making money. If that is the case, then a
people use those terms. They really don’t have
number of breweries will go out of business. But we have
any meaning. To a brewer who brews 5000 hl
been saying that for a few years now and it still hasn’t
per year Fuller’s is huge (about 330,000 hl, if you must
happened. The bigger issue is that we aren’t working
ask). However, if you are Carlsberg, Fuller’s is almost
together to address this. Instead, big blames small and
I read a book once – I think it was by Somerset-
But, it is not all doom and gloom. The drinker today
Maugham or maybe J B Priestly (well it was a long time
has never had more choices. The brewer is firmly
ago) – in which a number of people got into a railway
established as the most important person in a brewery.
carriage. Many were going to the same convention, one
Flavour is king and brewers know flavour better than
of them worked for a company making self-adhesive tape
anyone. Organisations, like the London Brewers’ Alliance,
another in glue and another in gum (this was written in the
help each other and generate a brotherhood of brewers
‘50s). They did nothing but argue. When they all got off,
though its meetings. It has become fun to be a brewer
the people remaining in the carriage looked at each other.
and collaborations have become de rigueur.
Finally, one of them said: “Funny, I thought they would all have stuck together.”
I think the brewing business is crying out for leadership. Someone who can see both sides of the
Sometimes I feel that about the brewing industry. Craft
argument (they are always two sides to an argument). My
v tradition. Keg v cask. Big brewer v small brewer. If only it
own hope is that SIBA and CAMRA grasp this nettle. Why
was that simple. Instead, we have medium sized brewer
them? Because by and large SIBA represent the brewers
v small brewer, slightly bigger brewer v small brewer
that make the beer I am most interested in. I will lay my
and tiny brewer v small brewer. The consumer (hereafter
cards on the table and just simply say I have never been
referred to as the drinker) wants one thing – beer he or
interested in making or drinking standard lager. The beer
is just not to my taste; this does not make it a bad beer,
Today the industry appears to be more fractious than the one I joined in 1974. Why is that? First, there are more breweries. Secondly, in ’74 brewers were concerned with
just a beer I do not like. I am, like every other person in this world, quite capable of bias. And why CAMRA? Well it is the only relevant consumer
brewing, the selling side rarely impinged itself on the
organisation. The drinkers’ voice must be heard too. Who
minds of the brewers. In the smaller breweries today,
else can represent the drinker and pub goer? They also
the brewer is often the sales director too. Competition is
represent the traditional beer of Britain, cask ale.
keenly felt. If you lose a bar handle to another brewery,
Again, my bias comes to the fore.
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Ultimately, I just want someone to try to mend the factions. Take for instance the debate on keg v cask – or evil v good as some people think. It is perfectly possible to get a bad pint of cask and a great pint of keg and vice versa. Generally, keg beer is served colder and fizzier than cask. Temperature will change the way you perceive flavour and guess what, carbon dioxide also changes the way you perceive flavour. Now given that there are so many different flavours in the world of beer, it would be logical to assume that some flavours suit keg and some suit cask. One is not better than the other, just different. Keg is far more popular than cask. There are obvious reasons for this. It has a longer shelf life, it is easier to look after in the pub, but above all it has a bigger margin both for retail and the brewer. Currently it is also far sexier. This is because it is the container of the craft beer revolution – if only Americans could make cask beer then that, too, would be sexy. Cask also has its advantages. It is the least processed of all beers and therefore processes the most natural flavours. A brewer at Bass told me a long time ago that cask beer has better drinkability than keg. He reasoned that this was to do with the yeast – and I agree with him. A beer that has been separated from its yeast for six months has less drinkability than a beer that has been fined just 24 hours ago. Craft beer has further blurred things by effectively
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Competition is keenly felt. If you lose a bar handle to another brewery, even if they are your friends, it still hurts. John Keeling
putting unfiltered beer in a keg. Is this cask beer in a keg or a new hybrid? Mind you, Watneys put cask beer in kegs in the 1980s. Innovation? Or, is it just rediscovery of the past as brewing historian Ron Pattinson and I call it? So, in conclusion, we must unite behind the issues that
we have in common rather than fight over the problems that divide us. When we are all on the plane to the next CBC convention in America, the other passengers might end up saying how wonderful it is to see all the various brewers sticking together.
Have an issue you want John to discuss? Email
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Brewers Lectures bristol The Brewers Lectures is returning to Bristol this September. So join some of the industry's leading lights for an afternoon of education and entertainment on September 13th, 2018. speakers Chris Hannaway | Infinite Session Chris Hannaway is the co-founder (with brother Tom) of London’s Infinite Session, which produce excellent alcohol-free beer. “Let’s put agendas to one side and instead, lets’s make it easy for consumers to pick an alcohol-free free, for brewers to experiment with new flavours and styles, and for retailers to display our ranges,” he explains. “Let’s focus our efforts on working together to build this category to have the impact that we know it can, not limit it and stifle our potential.”
The collaboration saw 14 of the finest female brewers team up with Heriot-Watt students and lecturers to brew a kettle sour beer that will showcase the very best in brewing. Tom Palmer | Mondo Brewing Company Tom Palmer is the co-founder of Battersea’s Mondo Brewing Company. A US native hailing from St Louis, Missouri, Tom’s father worked at Budweiser so he knows a thing or do about the qualities of consistency and repeatability in beer. Alongside co-founder Todd Matterson, Tom has helped grow the London brewery though several stages of expansion and produce fantastic beer while he’s at it.
Katie McCain | Pressure Drop Tom Bott | Signature Brew Katie McCain is a brewer at Pressure Drop in Tottenham Hale. With the brewery’s beers never tasting better, Katie also recently hosted and and helped spearhead a recent project alongside Jenn Merrick, formerly head brewer at Beavertown Brewery and founder of community-based brewery Earth Station.
Tom Bott is the co-founder of London’s Signature Brew, a brewery he started with his cousin Sam McGregor. In addition to brewing great new beers and upcoming expansion at its Leyton site, the business continues its mission to bring great beer to gig venues, collaborating
with diverse artists and bringing beer to festivals like Slam Dunk.
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Andy Parker | Elusive Brewing Andy Parker is an award-winning home brewer, author and the owner of Berkshire-based Elusive Brewing. The brewery has made waves across the UK, producing beers that have one eye on tradition and the other on taking things to the next level.
Watershed (Waterside 3) 1 Canon’s Rd, Bristol BS1 5TX 13 September 2018 12.30pm to 5pm
Brian Dickson | Northern Monk Significant expansion, collaborations across the globe and then recognised as one the best breweries in the world. Not to mention eclipsing its £500,000 crowdfunding target by a cool £1 million, it has been a pretty decent few months for Leeds-based Northern Monk and its head brewer Brian Dickson, who continues to put out some of the best beers around.
Tickets are £25 full price and £12.50 concesssion. Go to lectures.brewersjournal.info
proudly sponsored by
Jo Pritchard | TLT Jo Pritchard is a legal director at UK law firm TLT, specialising in intellectual property and advising a range of businesses including drinks companies and leisure and retail operators. She advises on intellectual property risks and disputes, including brand and design infringements, patent and copyright issues and the contentious aspects of trademark portfolio management. She also handles mediation for clients, providing parties with working commercial relationships – which can be more beneficial than statutory remedies.
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Great Expectations Being told you manage the world’s second best brewery is an achievement many would dream of, yet few can attain. And it’s an accolade that has proved to be a fantastic asset for Paul Jones and Cloudwater, the Manchester-based business he both manages and cofounded. But Jones refuses to let such success define the brewery, however. He believes educating the consumer, meeting their expectations and showing the world just how good modern UK beer can be, is far more important.
are. Does it matter if Lionel Messi is the world’s best and Ronaldo is second. Or vice versa? To be able to watch both is a joy and after all, it’s only football... And from speaking to Paul Jones, co-founder and owner of Manchester-based Cloudwater, you get the impression he wishes that all of the unnecessary noise and hype around beer could disappear once in a while, so people could enjoy a great beer for what it is, a great beer. Without all of the background nonsense. The brewery has enjoyed a meteoric rise in less than four years. It has many fans that enjoy the beers it produces but like any successful individual, outfit or business, it has those that for whatever reason, look upon it less favourably. And for that reason, Jones wants to set the record straight.
by Tim Sheahan
“When we started putting together this company in 2014, we had a list of dreams and ambitions. Above all, we
wanted to build a great business and make impressive
he Fisht Stadium in Sochi, Russia.
beer that people would enjoy,” he tells us. “We asked
It's 10:45pm, 15th June, 2018.
ourselves how we could create a company that makes
It’s the type of humid, sultry night that
enough money to retire older staff with a good pension.
makes watching sport a challenging affair,
I also had goals such as being invited to the Mikkeller
let alone playing close to two hours of it.
Beer Celebration in Copenhagen and collaborate with
The clock hits the 88th minute of a scintillating tie
between Portugal and Spain, and the former trail 3-2
breweries we idolise across the globe. So we’re privileged to have hit a lot of our founding goals early on.”
despite going ahead twice in this Group B, World Cup tie.
Accolades and awards
But it’s not over. Portugal have a free kick. Cristiano Ronaldo steps over the ball. Primed. The position isn’t ideal but this is Ronaldo, after all. Adopting his trademark stance, he paces towards the ball, smashing it and curving it beautifully around the right-hand side of the wall, beating five defenders and one of the world’s best goalkeepers in the process. The stadium goes wild and the World Cup, it seems,
arly success is somewhat of an understatement and Cloudwater’s ascension up the respected RateBeer Awards is a fitting way to map the
brewery’s rise. In 2016, the business was recognised as the ‘Best New Brewer’ in England. Not bad for a brewery
has now officially started. And though it pains them,
that had only started brewing the year prior. 12 months
there’s applause from Spain fans among the tens of
later, things were getting even more serious. Jones would
thousands in attendance, too. It was a brilliant strike and
have needed an additional baggage allowance to haul
such quality needs acknowledging.
back 11 accolades from the States, including the fifth best
Rewind several months and fans of Italian club Juventus felt compelled to do similar when the same player put them to the sword with a sumptuous overhead kick during the illustrious European club competition, the Champions League. But despite his successes and ability, Ronaldo still has
brewery in the world, no less. But despite such unprecedented success, it was the this year’s awards that really blew his mind. “Being awarded the fifth best brewery in the world at RateBeer Best 2017 blew my mind. But we reached the end of 2017, and we were pretty sure we’d drop out of the
his detractors. Sure, you might not support the teams
top 10,” says Jones. “It had been a good ride so I listed a
he plays for, but football is the beautiful game, right? So
number of objectives I wanted to achieve going forward in
once in a while, why not enjoy these players for what they
the near future, and one of those was to hit that number
From left: Head brewer James Campbell, managing director Paul Jones, head of retail Hannah Murphy and brewery manager Mark Cotterrell
Hive of activity: Mike Marcus, founder of nearby Chorlton Brewing Company, paying the team a visit
A busy brew day requires all hands to the pump and Against The Grain are in town for a new collaboration
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ondon was, and remains, its largest market. Figures that unsurprisingly impacted its decision to open its first taproom and storage facility outside of
Manchester. And if that goes to plan, there could even be
We don’t want to be a band playing to an empty room. We are trying to write music that is so good that we can’t help dancing to it while playing to a crowd that is dancing to it, too Paul Jones, Cloudwater
two spot at RateBeer Best, and two weeks later, we did.” He explains: “There are people that would absolutely
another such outpost on the horizon, for the capital, too. He explains: “Look, Manchester’s city centre population is about 250,000, and the Greater Manchester population is around two and a half million. So out of that, how many come to the centre to drink beer. And of those, how many of those like our type of beer? “Sure, the scene here continues to develop, slowly, but there hasn’t been the growth in craft outlets to match the number of breweries opening. In London, the demand and market are massive and it makes sense to put your beer where the people are. Especially when they’re the type of people that already enjoy your beer.” Jones is hopeful that between 10-12% of everything
ridicule me for saying stuff like that, and they do. But as
the brewery packages in Manchester each week will
I’ve said, what we absolutely are trying to be is a brewery
go through the new facility, which is located on Enid
that is as involved with its internal processes as it is with
Street in Bermondsey, a town in the London Borough
the consumer. We really care about our consumers, and
of Southwark. When it opens, it’ll be in good company a
that they are excited and satisfied by their experiences
couple of doors down from Brew By Numbers and also
they have with, and around, our beer.
Bristol’s Moor Beer, which also opted for the area for its
“We don’t want to be a band playing to an empty room.
capital site. In addition, breweries such as The Kernel,
We are trying to write music that is so good that we can’t
Fourpure, London Beer Factory and Anspach and Hobday
help dancing to it while playing to a crowd that is dancing
call Bermondsey home, as does distributor The Bottle
to it, too. That’s the ambition and I don’t think there is
anything shoddy in that.” In an age where ratings are valued and denounced in
“London gives us an opportunity to close the gap between the consumer and us, and gives us a direct
equal measure, it’s only natural to acknowledge positive
opportunity to convey what we’re about, our vision, and
feedback, especially when it can be such a boon to one’s
ideas,” he says. “But these new premises have to work
business. Look at Ronaldo. Love him or hate him, you are
financially, too. We don't have cash to burn and we’re not
sure as hell going to find his goalscoring prowess more
doing this off the back of any kind of refinancing because
enjoyable when it’s for your team, not against them.
we're trying to make this work out of the company's own
“It’s weird to find it difficult to appreciate and value feedback, which can be especially helpful if it is included
pockets as much as we possibly can.” He adds: “We're trying to progress slow and steady
in your internal conversations about quality, value, and
and to ensure any new taprooms operate as a going
more. From my view, ignoring customer feedback is a
concern. If we chose a quieter neighbourhood and the
flawed approach. Sure, we’re in the manufacturing sector
outlet had a flat six months, that would drive our attention
but we are moving rapidly towards also being a service
and resources away from the brewery, and the focus on
industry, so that means customer satisfaction has to
beer quality, to how we could make that work. They need
register somewhere,” he says. “This is especially valid in
to be as self-sufficient as possible from day one. The
the UK, which I would argue is the most competitive beer
whole company is better off if we focus on getting new
marketplace in the world. Ratings can make a big impact
retail sites off the ground without keeping any of us awake
on whether you can easily shift your beer or not.”
And Cloudwater is shifting its beers. A lot of them.
Being kept awake at night is something Jones knows
Several new beers are released each week. Whether its
all too well and he references the design misstep that
a 2.9% Small India Pale Lager brewed with Citra, or an
put a grey cloud over the brewery at the beginning of
8.5% Double IPA that comprises Citra BBC backed up by
this year. Collaborating with Miami’s J. Wakefield Brewing
Mosaic and an aroma hop bill of Citra BBC, Mosaic BBC,
brought the branding of the US brewery’s beers such as
Enigma and Loral. Their beers are flying out.
‘Orange Dreamsicle’ into laser focus in the UK. Labels
All systems go during a brewing and packaging day at Cloudwater, Manchester. June, 2018.
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that placed scantily-clad women at the fore of design.
to die down after weeks of criticism and it was something
With such feedback taken on board, the collaboration
that he says nearly made him pull back from being the
between the Miami and Manchester breweries attempted
public figure he’s known as in the industry.
to indulge in some self-deprecation. The branding of the beer, ‘Shelf Turds’ featured
“It made me feel as if having a public voice, and raising issues outside of beer production wasn’t worth it. Because
illustrations of Jones and Jonathan Wakefield in their
if what is going to come of me having a voice is being
underwear. However, the market disapproved. Not only
shot down so easily, then it just doesn’t feel worth it. I
was the beer removed, but Jones took it upon himself to
almost decided I won’t have a voice and we as a brewery
liaise with J. Wakefield and encourage them to look again
will speak on things less. I’ve tried to demonstrate that we
at some of their existing branding, which they rebranded
can just be humans, a company of humans with values,
but at least at this point in time, it feels there is no margin
Despite being commended for the lengths he went to,
for error,” he explains. “I worry about how many voices are
Jones still feels regret over the situation, but would also
silenced right now. There are people in the industry that
like a wider industry dialogue on the nuances of such
have things they would love to express but I know that
there are many that are terrified about putting their values
“It was very tough, and extremely stressful. Even
out there because as soon as you do you are pinned to a
though I might have done a thousand positive things
mast, and held up to impossible standards. It’s no wonder
for the industry up to that point, nothing else seemed to
the vast majority of breweries just stick to beer, and
matter, one mistake and that was it. I was fucked for a
conduct themselves in a bit of a social or political vacuum
month, if not longer. And irrational fears of another Twitter
– it’s far less traumatic.”
storm still lingers on.” he says. “It felt like people threw
He adds: “I know I now find it ever more difficult to
anything positive we had done out of the window for
make statements based on my experiences, without
that one mistake. We have high standards for ourselves,
second guessing if people will call me out for something
and we don’t want to misrepresent our values, or offend
that’s visible from their point of view but maybe not mine.
anyone, ever. Maybe we’ll move past this being brought
But I’m more concerned with trying to demonstrate that
up in every interview eventually, and I hope we do, but
people can trust us, and that we’re doing our best to offer
the way things manifest themselves online at the moment
them long-lasting value in our beer. That’s what’s crucially
an element of point scoring and powerplay is the norm.”
important. “I’m very hard on our beer quality so I make sure to
exert every little angle of scrutiny over what is flawed in every batch, with a view to protecting the consumers experience. Nothing else pays our bills, keeps our lights
ones goes on: “I say to my guys all the time,
on and makes the other positive things we want to do
because we get a lot of stick from a lot of people,
outside production without customer satisfaction. So it is
that it’s either people trying to slow us down or exert
important to me that when someone is disappointed with
some sort of influence over us. It’s rarely a truly altruistic
their experience we pay attention. Reacting to negative
concern that someone has when they flame you online,
feedback as if it’s just a consumer complaining is too
it’s really that they want to be powerful, and to be this
narrow. Sometimes customers think we’re so good that
week's judge and jury.
they’re deeply upset to discover we don’t always hit our
“What seems to be getting lost behind some of the
mark, however hard we try. It’s important to me to come
most seething outrage is a call in and focus making the
off the back of even angry complaints asking myself what
online spaces around beer a more positive. If I was a
we can do to make things better?”
wine drinker right now and I tuned into beer Twitter at
Jones is acutely aware of the positive impact strong
the wrong time, as this week’s spat or argument aired in
ratings and accolades have had on his business during
public, I might be put off quite quickly and think 'Wow
these first three and a half years. But in the words of
this is awful!’.
Uncle Ben from the Spiderman comic book universe,
“I guess it’s quite normal that overwhelming positivity
‘With great power comes great responsibility’ and
and good gets lost against the negative, and I feel that
that’s something that no doubts resonates with the
there’s, at times, a lesser overview than there could be of
how the industry really influences the world. I think that’s
“If we carry out any critical evaluation of our beer in-
a big problem but, you know, online platforms don’t really
house and we flag something up, and if a customer picks
make long form, nuanced conversation easy, or in some
up on that too, then we escalate that issue to rectify any
problems as soon as we can. As long as the feedback
Jones feels that the J.Wakefield incident only started
is genuine, of course. I have always tried to take any
negativity thrown at us from the most positive angle I can, and to use it for good. I have more than enough on my plate looking after the business, team, and customers that want us to succeed than to be slowed down by people hoping we’ll fail,” he explains. “I would like to promote more appreciation of the stuff that will build the industry into the right space rather than what will chip away at it. Because we’re only really good at doing the latter right now.” Jones adds: “As food and drink has become a consumer-facing, direct communicating industry, I see a lot of animosity, of businesses being negatively impacted by shabby reviews and how it drags them down. "Some reviews are genuine and some are not, and it can be difficult to separate to two sometimes. We’re all doing our best and it’s easy for consumers to expect utter flawlessness in every little thing but that’s not always possible, despite every effort. It’s made especially tough when we’re working at the scale of how businesses such as ours operate.
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How do we keep raising expectations, telling folk it’s a better experience than what they can get elsewhere, while also not building a perception that we can be utterly flawless Paul Jones, Cloudwater
quality, but it will have lost some of its freshest edges,
“We make beer in small batches, with ½-3 brews per release. We’re not blending 5, 10, 15 batches into a single tank where we can correct any errors in the early ones with recipe or process changes in the latter ones. Unblended beer is what most smaller brewers make and there is a margin for error there that doesn’t exist in macro
and will no longer be quite the same beer that was passed in the brewery’s sensory panel for packaging. The BBE date conveys when we expect the beer to start a “less graceful decline” towards being a shadow of its former self, by starting to showing age related off flavours. The inclusion of such information is the latest addition
blended beer. So it’s a question of asking how do we keep
to the product breakdown featured on each of its cans.
raising expectations, telling folk it’s a better experience
But since its initiation, the brewery has always featured a
than what they can get elsewhere, while also not building
comprehensive list of product ingredients on its labels.
a perception that we can be utterly flawless.”
Something that has developed further to promote hopping rates and similar details. It’s a positive step for
the consumer, and Jones believes it’s an effective way to educate the drinker. Despite the possible detriment it
ne approach Cloudwater has taken to quality
could have on the wider brewery at large. “I took that decision at the start to put every ingredient
is through the adoption of how it conveys
on our beers. Did I make it easier for other breweries
freshness information on its canned output. The
to learn how we are putting those styles together?
business has printed packaged on dates since September
Absolutely, we made competition more intense for
2015. Jones has previously said that the business has
ourselves, but hopefully made life better for our
compromised reasonable shelf lives with short BBE
consumers! I think given that we've not seen a wide
dates, so to encourage every link in the distribution chain
adoption of ingredient publishing, it goes to show that
to move its beer in the quickest possible fashion. Such
many breweries are still reluctant to share their ingredient
an attitude has helped ensure there aren't stockpiles of
intellectual property, and I can understand why,” he
its beer anywhere, except for the days after a packaging
explains. “Go back to 2015 and it might have taken six
run, when a few pallets of cans sit in near suspended
months for an alternative style to see the light of day.
animation conditions in their 4ºC cold store.
Now, you can put out a beer and it’s maybe a month
As the industry and its distribution model develops, the brewery has gone on to adopt a new model and that’s
before a bunch of alternatives hit the market.” He adds: “There is an intense geographical overlap of
the addition of a ‘Freshest Flavour Before’ date. This is
breweries reach here in the UK, and to build a sustainable
the brewery’s method of saying that provided the can
future, you have to ask yourself how you can figure
has been well looked after once it left our warehouse, it
out if there are any protected spaces outside of tied
should present very well to the consumer, and as was
tap handles. I feel as if we have functioned as an R&D
intended, before such date passes.
brewery for the rest of the UK sometimes. We have taken
After the FFB date, the beer should still be of high
a lot of risks, and sure we have benefited in taking those
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weeks, months and years later. One such goal, so ably achieved by many US breweries, is the ability to drive the self retail model. “We are constantly waiting for hundreds of thousands of pounds that’s on our books, revenue that’s hopefully coming back from our customers. Most of them do their level best in their own way, but there is always an obscene amount overdue on our credit terms, and that’s
Traditional beer has waged a covert propaganda campaign against all keg beer, and lager for decades, and that’s impacted the growth opportunities of microbreweries Paul Jones, Cloudwater
risks as well, but in today's fast paced environment, things change all the time.
“It’s not that long ago that we started canning in 440ml
money I can’t use to build my business, to invest in staff and training to make higher quality beer,” he says, cutting a frustrated figure. “Cash flow issues do not escape a brewery like us at all, and are depressingly prevalent from the top to the bottom of the chain. So if we were able to drive more self retail, it would help us achieve increased financial comfort that we still don’t have, and it would allow us to make better decisions for our consumers.” As of the company's 2016 end of year accounts, the cashflow was being managed by a £1.5 million director's loan. With debtors owing more than £300,000. He adds: “We want to develop our online store, and want to develop what people can buy from us from the brewery and the taprooms. Each time I visit the US, I am
cans, and a little bit further back when we introduced the
astounded by the commercial realities that don’t ever
regular Double IPA releases. Now both are commonplace,
feel like they could be a possibility here in the UK. I can
you can’t move for them. The same is starting to apply
visit a brewery that finds that there is nobody else that
to DDH (Double dry-hopped) beers. For us that means
makes their style of beer for hundreds of miles, or even
literally double the quantity of hops, not that we dry
no other brewery that makes modern beer of such quality
hop the beer twice. I wish there was a term that meant
for hundreds of miles. Some breweries can develop great
the same thing for every single brewery. Instead, it can
direct retail support, gaining amazing loyalty and a host of
often feel like a marketing term rather than something be
benefits that come from being somewhat stylistically or
With that in mind, Jones admits that it could become
“That is a massive part that has made the US stand
harder and harder to maintain a commercial will to offer
out and grow, and it’s something we don’t have a cat in
up such transparency going forward.
hell’s chance of doing in the UK. The taps that we hope to
“I truly hope it doesn’t end up being the case, but
pour through here are the same taps that our peers want
when you look at how far things have come, and how
to get on, and for anybody that debuts a new style in the
much thing have changed in the last two years, then you
UK these days, you can bet your bottom dollar they’ll
ask yourself how much could happen in the next two, you
be many similar versions in a month or two, which is
find yourself asking whether being as open as possible
potentially great for the consumer, but it puts us in a very
will negatively impact us as a business. I hope not. And I
different position in the UK than our peers in the US.
want to be as transparent as we are today long into the future,” he laments.
“I’m good friends with folk in the US that have queues of hundreds of people out the door each day. You could never imagine that same situation unfolding over here because we
The cash conundrum
are brought up on pub culture. Buying beer, and enjoying it in a pleasant environment is the norm in the UK. So when we have an online shop platform that gives us reach
ones is proud to be part of the brewing scene in
geographically, or that meets the needs of those customers
the UK. He’s often said he is privileged to be part
that require such convenience, we need to protect our
of the burgeoning modern Manchester beer sector
customer’s experience and do our level best to make online
but equally, that Cloudwater is not a dyed in the wool Manchester brewery. He takes inspiration from London,
sales work as perfectly as a trip to the local pub.” Development to its online platform continues, as does
Leeds, Bristol, the lot. And he’s a big fan of North America.
its upcoming London taproom and a new unit adjacent
Many seeds will have been sown on his visits overseas,
to its Manchester brewery. The Manchester facility will
ideas that would be transplanted to the UK audience
house a cold store allowing for direct can and bottle
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sales, storage, and a taproom with purpose-built bar, seating, amenities and events space. It’s an impressive setup that will no doubt prove a go-to spot upon opening this summer. Jones continues the investment in its current brewery site despite the lingering prospect of the need to move facilities in the future. It’s existing lease doesn’t expire for
pening up good beer to the wide market is why Jones has great admiration for businesses such as BrewDog, which he feels are effective at
converting macro drinkers through its bar portfolio.
a few years, something that is likely to be extended. It’s
“I'm convinced that we are one of the most competitive
something that remains at the back of his mind, but he
marketplaces in the world and there is 100% geographical
knows that the only way to prepare for such an eventuality
overlap for all but the smallest breweries across the UK.
is ensure the business becomes as profitable as possible
A tap in Manchester might be pouring us tomorrow but
before then so to cater for the high costs of a move.
not the next day. So we have to wait our turn to go back
“We are still definitely going to have to find a new
on,” he explains. “We’re limited by the number of speciality
home in the not too distant future and we're going to
outlets that exist to pour great beer. Breweries like
need to be able to afford to move. It’s going to cost
BrewDog help increase our potential customer base by
millions of pounds to do that and to be able to setup a
showing people new to craft beer what exists beyond the
new site and get that ready before we move over is likely
macro beer world they may be used to. And they should
to drain all the profit we’ve made up until then many times
be celebrated for it. Without such efforts, our market
over. It’s not going to be an easy thing to manage and I’d
would grow at a much smaller pace."
like to think we can get someone on board to head up that side of things,” he explains. At this point in time, Cloudwater employ 21 people on
And Jones wants to do his level best to affect that change. He just doesn’t expect an easy ride doing it. “Broadly speaking, people think we've somehow had
site at the brewery, which include three in work production,
a lot of luck and that things have been straightforward for
three in cellaring and thee in packaging. Recent staff
us on the pathway to whatever semblance of success we
hours have been cut to 40 hours per week while the wage
enjoy now. I can't tell you the number of people that I've
bill has increased 23%. Jones is also working on raising
spoken to in the industry and the number of consumers
the minimum wage for each member of the team at the
that approach us with the impression we’ve had it easy,”
brewery to £30,000 per annum. The company has also
Jones stresses. “I’ve invested in travelling and spreading
just employed Doreen Joy Barber, formerly of Five Points
the word of modern British beer, and that doesn’t only
Brewing Company in London, and Jeremy Stull, a founding
benefit Cloudwater. If you spend time elsewhere in the
member of Manchester’s Beermoth.
world talking about the positive achievements of modern
Stull will take ownership of managing the brewery’s barrel-aged output, a part of the business Jones admits
British beer, and developing the perception of British beer, it benefits everyone.
has sat on the back-burner somewhat while its focus on
He adds: “We’re sometimes held up to impossible
fresh beer grows apace. But to be firing on both cylinders
standards and have all sorts of accusations thrown at us.
with both, is one way Jones believes the brewery can
But I can’t stress how tough it has been to come this far,
sustain growth in what is becoming an increasingly
and how tough the future looks. There’s no silver lining
challenging and competitive UK beer market.
on the horizon yet. It’s difficult to appreciate the stresses
He explains: “I genuinely don’t believe the wider
and work that go into any success in the industry, without
industry can keep going at the pace it is without a bunch
being on the ground to see it first hand. I've spent time
of things changing. Traditional beer has waged a covert
with folk that sell literally hundreds more stock items
propaganda campaign against all keg beer, and lager for
from their front door than we ever could, and I might
decades, and that’s impacted the growth opportunities
have initially held a narrow-minded impression of their
of microbreweries wanting to make modern keg beer
lives being somewhat easy. But having seen the effort
in some rural locations, and made another hill to climb
that goes in from dusk till dawn, it gave me a real insight
for any brewery devoting time to independently brewed
lager. It’s tough for them to break into lager because lager
“If everyone is working really hard why does hard work
has been viewed as a commodity by those that have
not equal the same success for everyone? It’s possible to
bought into the CAMRA rhetoric over many years.
think it must be down to luck. But it's not the application
“But lager is the biggest market in the UK and it would
of effort alone that achieves results. It is focus, and having
be nice if we could all get a little piece of that massive
vision, taking risks, being bold, and then trying your
pie, reaching new customers and helping bring them
goddamn best to follow it up with something even more
into a world of new beer experiences, as it presents such
meaningful next time.
huge growth opportunities for everybody."
“And hoping it works.” u
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Assess your options There is no one-size-fits-all approach to owning and running your brewery. What works for one outfit, might not be the right solution for a peer only streets away. The same applies to how you operate you keg output. There has never been as comprehensive array of options as there is now when it comes to the kegs you distribute your beer in, so we spoke with some of the key businesses offering bestin-class keg solutions to your brewery.
Jones points out that each year, loss and misuse of kegs and casks costs the beer industry in excess of £50m, according to figures from the British Beer and Pub Association’s (BBPA) Keg Aware initiative. One major boon, Jones believes, of one-way kegs is that they can open new markets, enabling an instantly increase in your market, opening up exports as well as increase national sales. "You can see companies like Eebria facilitating even the smallest breweries to sell right across the UK,” says Jones. “Steels can limit markets available to you. The large brewers already have the infrastructure to sell steel kegs anywhere in the UK and send carriers out to collect empties, but this is not the case for most breweries in the UK. When selling in steel you tend to only sell within a
by tim sheahan
defined distance from your brewery or through trusted wholesalers, which can be few and far between.”
It’s perhaps unsurprising that Ruud Bais, chief
t’s a well-worn phrase but a beer’s journey is only
operating officer at Lightweight Containers, which is the
truly starting when it leaves your brewery. More
manufacturer of KeyKeg and Unikeg, echoes many of
often that not, a consumer will lay the blame at the
feet of the brewery if their beer isn’t up to scratch. This is regardless if it’s the fault of the bar or pub
“These give you ultimate flexibility. You get exactly what you pay for, no hidden costs and administration.
failing on their side in terms of storage, hygiene and
There is no return shipping and with better transport
dispense. And as an increasing number of breweries align
efficiency you will save up to 65% on transportation,” he
their output to can and keg, knowing what setup works
explains. “Every keg is new and therefore perfectly clean
for you is key.
and ready to fill. For optimum shelf life and quality and
“What solution is best for them is something we get
taste preservation KeyKeg is the best way to go because
asked frequently by new breweries or ones looking
of the inner bag that ensures that the content never gets
to grow. For us, one way kegs (OWK) are by far the
in any contact with a propellant and light. CO2 loss and
most flexible solution, explains Lewis Jones, business
O2 uptake numbers are absolutely unmatched in the
development manager at EcoKeg Europe. “Cash flow is
industry, so every beer stays as the brewer intended it to
King in every business but especially important when
be until the very last drop.
first starting out and when trying to grow and invest in new and bigger equipment. The obvious disadvantages of capital investment being tied up in steel when you
"The fact that the kegs are double walled, makes them extremely strong and safe to work with.” Bais believes the success of products such as KeyKeg
are trying to start out or grow can suffocate a business
is the result of the landscape of ownership and rental
possibly dragging it under.
changing in recent years.
“Also, there’ the risk of being victim to theft, uplifting or even ‘up cycling’,” he says.
“We see a transition from steel kegs and casks to one way kegs more and more. There are a lot of quality,
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financial and environmental advantages when working with our one way kegs,” he says. “Customers do not have to worry about loads of administration, keg repairs, lost kegs, cleaning programmes and scanning kegs throughout the supply chain." EcoKeg Europe’s Jones adds: “The industry as a whole is going through massive changes as consumers become more discerning. The growth of microbreweries with less capital and without national infrastructure has changed the supply chain. “With the craft revolution seeing customers demanding more quality and variety on tap, we are seeing more and more breweries competing for market share. A lot of these new breweries have limited resources therefore can not afford to tie up money in steel kegs or invest in keg washing equipment. “As the new wave of micro-breweries compete for sales, all breweries need to be flexible to adapt and respond to the ever-changing demands of the market. Some areas are becoming saturated with local suppliers whilst other areas there is little choice, so to be able to sell outside of your local area OWK’s can be a useful tool to grow. Nationally and export sales can offer much needed additional revenue. This is much easier to quote and manage with OWK as there is fixed costs." But one-way kegs need not be the exclusive means a brewery sends out its beer. These products can complement your portfolio. Guido Klinkhamme, is the sales director at Schaefer Container Systems, and a firm advocate of investment in your keg fleet. “Many examples are showing that mid to long term this will pay out and for sure will leave the profit with the brewers. If you look into the normal keg distribution of a brewery the number of trips per year will justify an investment in most of the cases even in one to two years,” he says. “However, by approaching independent financial brokers or local banks and asking them to finance the keg business may help to overcome relevant cash issues.” Klinkhamme explains: “The craft beer industry in the
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years or more, during which time it may well have been filled and emptied by your customers, based on a modest six trips per annum some 120 times. Any improvements in logistics which increase this annual churn only makes the case stronger for ownership, as for an initial outlay of £70 for keg and spear it is costing an average of only £0.58 per trip. When you factor in the costs of maintenance and repair during the kegs lifetime, he explains, we should add a further 30% of its initial cost. Alongside an attrition rate of 3% per year the cost per trip should still only reach in the region of £1.10 per fill or £132 as the full cost of the keg ownership over 20 years and 120 fills. Hickman says: “Most brewers will always favour bringing the internal sterilization of their kegs under their own control rather than leaving the task to a third party whose expertise lie in other disciplines, as kegs are far more difficult to internally inspect than a cask. "It will be the saving in reverse logistics, less the initial delivery into the brewery of the rental kegs that will be the major saving for the brewery choosing to rent. “The argument that it saves the brewer the initial capital cost and can be paid for out of revenue, can be countered by the fact that money is still relatively cheap
Thielmann has recently introduced the starting keg
and looks likely to remain so for the foreseeable future, rent to buy schemes acquiring equity in the asset and long-term finance deals are readily available on kegs.” Thielmann kegs continue to enjoy widespread
UK shows significant growth over the last years, with more
adoption across the industry and among the latest
companies offering different services for kegs in terms
developments taking place at the company is its new
of leasing, renting or pay per fill. This trend of financing
everything for everybody is somehow further turning
“The beverage industry offers different standards
down the qualified entrance barrier for craft brewers
for the packaging and dispensing of beer and other
in the UK. As a matter of fact these additional layer of
beverages. However, we understand that small brewers
semi-professional competitors may compromise the
need the maximum flexibility without the need of
quality of craft beer but for sure are going to intensify the
investing in cleaning and filling equipment,” explains Eva
competition for professional craft brewers in the UK.”
Fernández, marketing manager at the company. “For that
For Mike Hickman, there is no one size fits all solution,
reason, the Starting Keg offers the best of two worlds. On
it’s about what suits the brewer’s business model at
one side, its hand hole cover provides ease and safety
a certain time in the breweries evolution and that will
for cleaning and filling (one of the key advantages of
change in time as their business expands.
Corny Kegs), while its Sankey type spear provides the
“To own your keg population can be looked at in two ways as an asset or a liability, though most brewers all over the world in practise own their own branded
ability to make it fit in any conventional beer dispensing equipment.” The product is constructed of strong and durable
cooperage. However one-way steel rentals are another
stainless steel. The company says its kegs represent a
option relieving the brewer of the burdensome task of
great solution for storing and dispensing beer and other
repatriation of its asset, and can be a big help to brewers
beverages. They are easy to clean and are built to last for
to speed up market penetration,” he says. “Returnable
steel kegs have been the ultimate green packaging
“Top-grade austenitic stainless steel ensures a great
solution for delivering UK beer in bulk for over fifty years,
protection against corrosion and guarantees years of
returned to their owners after use for sterilizing and
services even in heavy duty work. Additionally, the use
refilling kegs have been a great success story copied all
of stainless steel as the base of all our products reduces
over the world.”
the carbon footprint and protects the environment, as
Hickman says the keg’s working life can be twenty
stainless steel recycles forever,” she says. u
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Bottle shops: getting the best licence Bottle shops are increasingly integral to brewers' growth strategies. In order to bring your ideas to market, you need to navigate a number of challenges â€“ principal among which is getting the required licence. Whether it's a couple of shelves at the end of a brewery tour, a larger point of sale within a brew-pub or a standalone unit away from the brewery, there are a number of factors to consider that may impact on your ability to set up an off-licence facility, explains Piers Warne, an associate in the licensing team at UK law firm TLT. brewersjournal.info
by piers warne
ales for consumption away from the premises are classed as off-sales. This is in contrast with a licence for on-sales for consumption on the premises. Seems simple? Unfortunately there are technical
arguments around the fringes about what is an on- or off-sale.
A simple rule of thumb is that if you're selling alcohol in a sealed container (usually a can or a bottle) to be taken away from the premises and drunk later, that's an off-sale. If you're selling something in an open container for immediate consumption, that will be an on-sale. This article focuses on off-sales, irrespective of whether this
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occurs in the brewery, a pub, a shop or an off-licence and for simplicity, I will refer to them as bottle shops. As we have established, a premises licence for off-
sales will be required for a bottle shop. Some bottle shops now sell 'fresh' beer from the tap in bottles that
u The council's licensing policy will
can be stoppered (sealed). This is still an off-sale for the
identify likely issues such as cumulative impact zones, hours policies and preferred conditions. u Pre-application consultation with police, the licensing board and trading standards is essential for the best results. u Don't be put off by cumulative impact zones. They are not usually there to prevent all applications, just more of the same. Offer something new. u Agreeing conditions you cannot actually live with 'for an easy time' at the start and hoping to challenge them later is likely to backfire in the long run. u Conditions limiting high ABV beers are likely to be disproportionate if they prevent you from selling niche 'craft' products at high prices.
reasons described above. Allowing customers a 'taster' of beers prior to choosing their purchase is not a sale, it is a sample of the product and you do not need to have onlicence facilities to provide this. Each licensing authority is bound by law to publish a licensing policy. This explains what the council expects of new applications and may include reference to: A cumulative impact policy, an hours policy, and conditions. The first thing to note is that nothing in a policy is absolute. Every application must be considered on its merits. However, let's look at some of the problems these licensing policies can throw up.
here are approximately 220 cumulative impact policies in effect in England & Wales at the moment. Most relate to larger towns and cities
and cover specific geographical areas containing large number of bars and clubs grouped together. The reality
for different types of premises that applicants should
therefore is that many brewers will not be applying within
consider applying for. Later hours will almost certainly
a designated cumulative impact zone (CIZ). However, if
lead to a more difficult application process with objections
you are, this can have a significant impact on whether or
from the council or police. However, this should not
not your application is likely to face opposition.
prevent you from applying for the hours you want to trade
A CIZ allows an authority to designate areas where the
if you think you can justify this.
sheer number of licensed premises has itself become
High ABV restrictions
a problem and the 'cumulative impact' needs to be considered when reviewing a new premises licence application. The council can decide if its policy only affects a certain type of premises – such as pubs and bars or off-licences – or simply lump all licensed premises into the mix.
ome councils have made it part of their policy to impose a condition limiting the strength of alcohol
Within a CIZ, the burden of proof is on the applicant
that can be sold in off-licences, often in the 5.5
to demonstrate that the application will not add to the
ABV+ region. Likewise, some police and trading standards
cumulative impact experienced in the area. Often, CIZs
officers will request something similar in relation to new
are intended to catch late night sellers of 'booze' and
licence applications. Brewers – especially brewers of
are less likely to prevent a small bottle shop, brewery or
double and triple IPAs – need to carefully consider
brew-pub from selling a few bottles for customers to take
whether they can comply with such a condition. If it's
going to be a problem, the condition needs to be resisted
Differentiating your operation from your average 'offie' is key to avoiding a rejection based on a cumulative impact policy. A bottle shop selling only local beers, likely
at the outset rather than being agreed to with a view to seeking to change it later. While challenging the condition might bring pain in
to appeal to a discerning crowd and priced so that street
the short-term, the reality is that this type of condition
drinkers and 'pre-loaders' are not your likely customers,
represents an outdated means of seeking to prevent
stands a much greater chance than an application to sell
street drinkers buying high volumes of alcohol at a low
cheap booze at a discount.
price. To limit the maximum ABV of all products is clearly
Licensing policies will often suggest the latest times
a disproportionate response to the problem. I do not recall
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Quarterly Beer sales ('000 barrels) Quarter 1 Volume
Quarter 2 Volume
Quarter 3 Volume
Quarter 4 Volume
Off trade beer sales from 1997 to the first quarter 2018
Beer sales snapshot ever seeing empty bottles of Trappistes Rochehfort 10 (weighing in at 11.3 ABV) dotted around my local park. Any condition should be targeted to the harm it is intending to address and go no further. For brewers, especially those producing small batch, high ABV specialist beers, such a condition can be devastating. The Portman Group, the responsibility body for drinks producers in the UK, is consulting on beefing up its 'immoderate consumption' rules for drinks. Its proposal would see immoderate consumption being defined as four units of alcohol per non-resealable container. While responsible consumption is a vital issue, the same considerations about proportionality will also need to be borne in mind. Early engagement with the police and licensing authority, alongside providing a good overview of your proposal, will often smooth the way for your application. Conditions can be agreed, or the reasons why they do not work can be explained, meaning problems are ironed out before you even begin your application. Remember, if no one objects to your application, it is granted without a
Sales of beer across Britain dropped 1.7% in the first quarter compared to the same period in 2017. Beer sales were down in the first quarter of 2018, contrasted with a 3.4% rise for the same months the year previous, British Beer & Pub Association data shows. The latest Beer Barometer sales data from the BBPA indicated a drop in ontrade sales of 1.9% while off-trade sales fell by 1.5% compared to Q1 2017. Brigid Simmonds OBE, BBPA Chief Executive, said: “Beer sales experienced another fall at the beginning of the year. “What’s still needed is a continued focus from the Government to reduce the tax burden on beer and pubs to ensure their success in the future.”
hearing, irrespective of any CIZ. u
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The Clear Advantage There are many ways to promote your brewery or drinks brand. Effective, impactful glassware is one such means. Be it Teku or Tulip, Snifter or Stein, it offers your brewery a way to show the drinker that you care about how they’re enjoying your beer and advertise the brand you've worked hard to build while you’re at it.
lens of our own experience and thus build our views on first impressions. Due to this framing effect, previously formed opinions are usually hard to change. This means: Not only a negative first impression will last, a positive first impression is perpetuated too. “This is exactly where the brewers’ great opportunity lies: beer glasses are visual embodiments of brands, and they provide a direct channel to the consumer’s mind. Before a consumer can even judge the quality and taste of a beer, their eyes will inevitably fall on the glass. And only if they feel attracted to its outward appearance will
by Tim sHEAHAN
their thirst for the beer rise. Given the fierce competition in the world’s beer markets, a positive first impression is
more important than ever.”
he idea is as simple as it is sounds: each
Rastal unveiled one of its most famous glass concepts
beer deserves its own special glass. Not
eight years ago, the Teku. Now commonplace in modern
only one that matches its style, but one
beer parlance, the Teku features a long stem that bears
that highlights the signature features of its
greater resemblance to a red-wine glass than to a beer
brand. No two beers are the same, and each
glass. The idea behind the concept was to provide the
brewer knows that their beer is distinctive, a brand with its
glass with an unusual curvature and an upward-widening,
own identity whose unique character is worthy of being
yet straight-lined rim area that would synergise with each
raised into the limelight,” explains Sabine Sahm from
other, thus allowing each beer to fully unfold its unique
Rastal. The company invented the design glass concept
wealth of aromas.
way back in 1964. She says: “In order to properly set the stage for star
The long-stemmed Teku goblet is the result of a collaboration with Teo Musso, the famous Italian craft
performers, a perfectly consistent label design, bottle
brewer and founder of Birra Baladin. The glass’s stylistic
and packaging will not suffice: of equal weight is the
borrowings from a red wine glass are clearly evident.
unmistakable outward appearance of the glass. A brand
When the Teku goblet was first presented in 2010 it
will only attract attention if it is presented to its audience
was received with admiration but also some perplexity.
in an engaging, “eye-catching” way.
But before long, the generic Teku glass, like others before
“Many brewers today continue to attribute their
it, immediately attracted numerous brewers who now
success to the quality of their product as its prime USP.
entrust Rastal to create their Exclusive Glass modelled on
And although it is, of course, true that there is no lasting
the pioneer glass. Interestingly enough, the first clients
success without perfect product quality, it should not be
were the Trappist monks from the Austrian monastery of
overlooked that presentation also matters. Because what
Engelszell, whose brewery had only begun its operation
holds true for an unfamiliar client, also holds true here:
form precedes content, at least from a time sequence perspective. “It is a well-established fact that all human perception is selective – we always tend to filter “reality” through the
For Lloyd Rees from Inspiration Gifts, glassware reinforces brand awareness and increases visibility to the consumer. “If you have the choice of drinking from a plain
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Rastal has become a go-to name in the brewing sector
whole glass. He adds: “The types of glassware we use are primarily Arc and Pasabahce however, over the years we have developed relationships with manufacturers from all around Europe and the Americas giving us a large choice of different glasses. “Our decoration facilities mean that we can print from single to multiple colour work on toughened glass along with full colour transfers and also put a personalised nucleation on the base of the glass. The main point of difference is over the last five years, we've specialised in developing our organic range of inks and print systems which means that the glassware we provide to the breweries remains toughened after printing and our curing techniques.” Rastal’s Sahm reiterates Lees’ point on choice. She says: “Successful wine growers have long known this: without the right glass, a wine’s bouquet of aromas cannot be fully appreciated or get lost “in transit” between the glass and the nose. In addition, drinking from highquality glasses pleases the palate and the eye. “We are without a doubt currently witnessing a major shift in awareness: beer is no longer viewed as a quick thirst quencher; there is a marked consumer trend towards beer styles with a strong character and rich flavour profile. Beer is increasingly perceived as a highquality product. We attribute this shift in beer culture to American craft brewing that has already found passionate followers in Europe, Japan and countless other countries around the world. “In Germany, these craft beers are often referred to as “gourmet beers” or “artisan beers”. But regardless of the name given to these beers, all of its representatives are characterised by a broad and unprecedented diversity of flavours that are unleashed by the use of innovative and unusual brewing methods.” To serve this ever-growing market, the company standard glass or brewery glass Which would you
continues to push its successful Exclusive Glass concept.
choose? It costs the drinker the same but given a choice
Around 100 million of glasses that are distributed each
they'd choose the latter because of brand reinforcement,”
year to ninety countries from Rastal’s location in Höhr-
he says. “It is the perfect product to promote your goods
to drinkers, it can help drive sales via the pub, bar or
“Working side by side with our clients, we develop
restaurant as it increases the loyalty shown to them and
tailor-made solutions, regardless of whether clients
it makes it more difficult for them to chop and change as
approach us with an already elaborate, clear-cut picture
they'd have to be using different glasses. It also creates a
of their customized glass in mind or with just a vague
sense of goodwill from the brewery to the recipient.”
silhouette of an idea. Our experts provide comprehensive
Rees is seeing strong growth in stemmed glassware,
assistance and valuable advice in all aspects relating to
citing a price point that’s becoming more affordable while
the design, decoration, production method and quality
strong interest remains in its conical glass range thanks
requirements of a glass“, explains Carsten Kehrein,
to it's large print area and their ability to print around the
Exclusive Glass Chief Designer at Rastal since 2001. u
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Against the Grain When Geoff Wright and Phil Halls started Grain Brewery in 2005, they did so with the following goals in mind: to become their own bosses, pay their mortgages, and to give drinkers in and around Norfolk more choice. Thirteen years on and they’ve done just that. Editor Tim Sheahan reports
of four establishments Wright owns alongside business partner Phil Halls. Having a direct route to market is obviously a boon for any brewing business, but the irony of why they pursued the pub model in the first place isn’t lost on the duo. “Pubs weren’t always part of the plan,” he says. “Early on we knew we needed a retail outlet for the beer so we started with farmers markets. We did hundreds and hundreds of them. There were some good ones, and there were some really awful ones. They’d take up Sundays and they’d take up Bank Holidays, but it was all
by tim sheahan
valuable cash coming into the business in those early days.”
He adds: “So when the idea of taking on The Plough
orwich City of Ale is a city-wide
came about in 2010 we thought: ‘Great, we can stop
celebration of city pubs, local breweries
giving up our days off to do those markets!’.
and good beer. Founded in 2011, it’s an
“But instead of just giving up a day off, we’ve ended
excellent way to take in meet the brewer
up giving up every day off because if we’re not tied to the
events, tap takeovers, food pairing
brewery, it’s the pub side. Mental, isn’t it?”
evenings, beer festivals and more, all in one city. It also
Wright doesn’t pull punches on his outlook to life and
encourages drinkers to visit many of the Norwich's pubs,
business. His acerbic wit is both forthright and incisive. But
and that’s exactly what people are doing at The Plough
it’s part of the reason why Grain Brewery is an operation
on St Benedicts Street.
that’s still going strong 13-years on.
There’s a couple at the bar, both with well-kept, great-
Business partner Halls, on the other hand, is softer in
tasting pints of Oak, a 3.8% cask bitter from Grain Brewery.
tone but no less driven. The duo had known each other
Lovingly placed next to those pints is what remains of
through friendship circles from their teens. But career
a pork pie and the duo are capturing the vista with their
paths, as they do, diverged. At the time of Grain Brewery
camera phones to no doubt catalogue their visit to both
coming into being, Halls was in a publishing position in
the pub and city.
central Norwich while Wright was marketing manager at
Snapping away, they captured the eye of Geoff Wright,
regional brewing giant Adnams.
co-founder of the brewery’s beer they’re enjoying.
“It was time for a change and Adnams itself has
“Look at those two. They’re taking a photo of
changed a great deal since the early 2000s, too. Back
something so simple as a beer with a pie. But seeing
then they would never brew more than three beers at a
people in the pub, drinking your beer, and deeming it
time. Now you go into the taproom and there’s 12 beers
worthy enough to photograph? That builds me a little
on,” says Wright. “They weren’t overly bothered by the
each and every time I see it,” he explains. “I don’t think
growth of microbreweries 10 or so years ago but that’s
I’ll every be fully proud of what I do, but that gives
the way the brewery operates. They have a powerful
me something to improve upon. It makes everything
confidence in what they do. Some would call it arrogance
but either way, they’ve changed somewhat since then.”
It’s no surprise to see Grain Brewery beers on at The Plough, or other pubs for that matter. The Plough is one
“But let’s be clear, my plan has always been to start my own brewery and grow it to a size that would allow me to
buy Adnams and close it down,” he laughs. Rewind a few years and The Grain Brewery story
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Top: Phil Halls and Geoff Wright. The Plough, Norwich, 2018.
started with the familiar tale of limited initial funds raised from the odd car sale and a re-mortgage. “We scraped together just under £50,000 – a lot of
Farm, in the Waveney Valley, Alburgh, Norfolk.”
money to us, but meagre funds as far as buying breweries
They taught themselves to brew with a few courses
go,” says Halls. “But we were able to buy and refurbish the
and a lot of trial and error with Halls lamenting the scarcity
five barrel starter brewery that had belonged to Castle
of information available back in 2005 compared to the
Rock, along with a hundred plastic casks, and found the
wealth online and elsewhere today.
perfect site to house it, in the old dairy and barns at South
“Was the beer any good very early on? Probably not. It
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took until Gyle 007 to make something that was sellable.
its offering to existing customers that operate in Norfolk
A pleasant, easy-drinking bitter that we could probably
and as far south as Cambridge
call an early iteration of our Oak beer,” he says. Starting out, the duo’s inspirations were quite different.
“We want to have good relationships with existing companies rather than jeopardise them. We are bringing
For Halls it was Thornbridge Jaipur and Dark Star
new people into the family as we go but we’ll never go
Hophead, while Wright was fond of Wherry from Norfolk’s
outside of our comfort zone. It’s important to remain in
control,” says Wright.
“It was so light and hoppy compared to the beers I was
And while Grain dabbles in bottling and canning its
brought up on such as Greene King IPA and Southwold
beer, they are firm advocates of enjoying beer on tap in
Bitter from Adnams,” he recalls.
the pub environment.
But, while both influences are evident in Grain
“For me, beer is always best drunk in the pub. Of
Brewery’s beers, one thing binds them and that’s tying
course, people can do whatever they like as it's not for me
their output to a sense of place and heritage.
to tell them but beer can come across as you intended it
“Geoff has a talent for coming up with good ideas, and drawing on our location in the heart of Britain’s best barley
to in the pub,” says Wright. “It also needs to be drunk responsibly, and consuming
growing land. With Maris Otter grown almost on our
beer in a pub environment enables that. It gives us the
doorstep, he came up with the name Grain,” says Halls.
control. I'm not saying you're not allowed to drink at
“Simple, apt, and it gave us the chance to play around
home and you have to come to the pub, because that's
with wood themes, hence the tree-based names of many
obviously ridiculous, but I just believe it’s a better place
of our beers such as Lignum Vitae which means ‘Tree of
Life’, and our wooden pump clips.”
The team take great pride in their pubs.
A lot of work went into developing the farm site in
Complementing The Plough is The Cottage in Norwich,
Alburgh. The team called upon friends, family and local
The Spread Eagle in Ipswich and Grain at The Corn Hall
farmers to help convert the buildings into anything
in Diss, Norfolk. They offer a considered beer range that
slightly resembling a brewery. As time has gone on,
extends to the wines and spirits on offer, too.
Wright and Halls have added more beers to their portfolio
Just don’t tell Diageo that.
and transformed their setup as demand dictated.
“Only yesterday I had a call from Diageo, I assume it
“We replaced the out-grown brew kit in 2012, with
was something GDPR related. They were updating details
a shiny new, efficient, and purpose built brewery from
and the woman on the other end of the line was from the
Malrex Fabrications in Burton upon Trent, tripling our
Guinness team,” says Wright. “She took the opportunity
output, but still based at South Farm,” says Halls. “By
to promote the product but I had to stop her there, as we
expanding into neighbouring barns, we have added
don’t sell any Diageo products at our pubs. She couldn’t
more fermenters and storage, and having dabbled with
believe and informed me that 75% of pubs sell Diageo
keg beer for a couple of years, we went into full keg
products, so I said ‘test me!’. She ran through Smirnoff,
production and built our lagering room in the old farm
Bailey’s, the lot. Each my response each time was ‘No, no,
no’. She wasn’t happy.” He adds: “Let me be clear, it’s not an actively antiDiageo stance, I just know there are better products available. Whether that’s a better beer than Guinness or a better gin than Tanqueray. We can sell better. We can make better.” And it’s that attitude that has carried the team onwards since starting in 2005. Getting their heads down, making a good product and offering a positive environment to enjoy it in. “We’re not particularly money driven,” says Wright. “We wanted to do something better with our lives, be our own bosses and do something we’re proud of. We believe in slow growth and doing things the right way.” Halls laughs: “Don’t get me wrong. I’m constantly frustrated and our meetings are mostly lively. But we wouldn’t have it any other way!” u
The focus on lagering is something the duo take very seriously. Keg beers such as its Pilsener, Pale and Weizen are all given a wealth of tank time to ensure they are packaged in the best condition possible. “Take the Pilsener, for example. Fermentation goes on for a minimum of four to six weeks. We chill to down to zero and carbonate at the same time. As each day passes, the beer becomes crisper, rounder, smoother. It improves all the time,” says Halls. Grain has been kegging beers for a little more than two and a half years, something that is slowly encroaching onto its cask share. When cask accounted for 80% of output in 2017, that figured has dropped to 70% in 2018 to enable increases in keg output. But as with anything the brewery does, everything is done slow and steady. It’s kegging more beers to increase
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Why events are a boon to your brewery Staging an event can be one of the most powerful tools in building a brand in beer, and can be more effective than any other marketing method. Truth be told, it’s also a great way of falling flat on your face if you don’t plan it right. Velo Mitrovich reports
two-day period, who downed the beer of 77 of some of the world’s best and most highly regarded craft brewers. Along with the beer, there were talks, panel discussions, an 18-truck food village and the beer – did The Brewers Journal mention the beer? There were over 500 different beers throughout the event. This year there will be 90 breweries serving up their beers, which each rotating though up to 16 different brews throughout the course of the two-day festival. A ticket sets you back £60 – along with a £5 booking fee.
by velo mitrovich
This gets you in and an official glass, which is almost magical. You just hold it up to a brewer and it gets filled
to the brim, with your wallet never leaving your pocket.
vents just aren’t for the big guns At times, it seems like why bother. There
Crazy. At March’s Brewers Lectures, Logan Plant of
are already those out that are doing a beer
Beavertown said the brewery spends a year planning the
event so close to perfection, how could you
event – the planning begins the day after the last one
ever come close? Case in point, the annual
closed. Plant said Beavertown sees so much importance
Beavertown Extravaganza which will kick-off in about two
on events and what they stand to gain in brand awareness
months. Last year this event drew 8,000 punters over a
and consumer education, that they have an actual
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brewery that participated in the event or buy their beer in the future. According to Plant, an event allows a face-to-face to happen between the customer and the brewer. “Whether your event is held at your brewery or in a venue, it brings people into our world.” For people to love your beer, they have to love your brand – who you are, what you stand for. Meeting someone face to face is the most effective way to make such a connection, and providing them with a great experience is even better.
ot every brewery has deep pockets like Beavertown, but that’s no excuse. While today Beavertown might plan for 8,000 people, its first
events were much smaller. They learned what worked, what didn’t, and expanded upwards. But for your brewery marketing to be successful, it’s more important than ever for your event to stand out. In the UK this year there will be around 50 ‘official’ events, and a large number of smaller ones at local breweries. In the USA, this year there will be more than 600 beer festivals and countless additional beer events for
dedicated events team. But, that’s at Beavertown. At your brewery, it feels like
consumers to choose from. While it sometimes gets old mentioning the USA and
at times you need a year just to organise your team to
craft beer in the same breath, there is still much we can
mop the floors.
learn from their industry. One thing that they have found
So again, why bother? Well…because of this. No matter what your size, no matter where your location, you can’t afford not to if you want to market your beer. You could be
lately is that beer events which focus solely on drinking have lost their charm. “Many geographic areas have become saturated
making the best beer in the world but if nobody knows
with general beer tasting events,” says Curt Foreman,
this, you might as well hang your ‘For Sale’ sign today.
the founder of Brew Fest Partners. “We have gravitated
An Eventbrite survey from a few years ago that polled 5,000 food and drink festival attendees in the States, found that after a beer event, 99% of participants will
toward building niche events that target attendees looking for a unique experience.” If there isn’t something different about your event, it
recommend your brand to a friend. Not to mention, half
doesn’t matter how good your beer is, people will not
will buy your beer on the spot, and 40% will sign up for
your email newsletter. Before we go any further, let’s repeat that one figure
According to Foreman, there are three strategies to break out of the typical beer event mould:
“99%”. Just shy of every single person who attends a beer event will recommend your beer to a friend. Percentage
Get creative with your cuisine
wise, this is more effective than World Cup or Superbowl advertising that costs millions. Whether you’re a craft brewer or a brewery owner, events should be a vital part of your brewery marketing strategy. Events are simply one of the most
ost beer events include food, but the pairings rarely surprise: Beer and French fries. Beer and burgers. Beer and chips. But running a
powerful ways to build a brand in beer, and can be more
profitable beer business relies on thinking more creatively.
effective than any other marketing method – this includes
An unexpected combo is the root of the Bacon & Beer
social media and advertising.
Classic’s success, which takes place in three cities across
Like recommending your beer to a friend, after attending a beer event, attendees are more likely to visit a
the U.S. “For the price of a ticket, attendees can sample from
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80+ regional craft beers, enjoy unlimited bacon snacks,
San Francisco brand hosts events at some imaginative
and take part in original activities like a giant Jenga game
locations: national parks, botanical gardens, and even a
and a bacon-eating contest. We knew that people love
local dim sum restaurant.
bacon and beer, and we wanted to capitalize on that opportunity,” says Kate Levenstien, CEO of Cannonball
Double down on entertainment
Productions, the brand behind the event. And their unique food pairing has struck a chord: the Bacon & Beer Classic has seen 500% growth year-over-year.
Think outside the tap room
f course, people want something to do while they sip on beer. Live music is an obvious solution. Amy de Leon of Brew Fest Events
credits their musical acts as one element of their events’ success. “We take great consideration in the music acts
hen most people think “beer event” they imagine a brewery tap room or festival grounds. But these predictable settings
we hire to ensure they’re talented and fun,” de Leon says. If only building your brewery’s brand consisted of just brewing beer. As much as all talk about the camaraderie
won’t spark the interest of beer fans in today’s saturated
between brewers, that fact is competition between
small breweries is heating up, and it’s important to define
“An interesting venue is important for us,” says Amy
your beer’s experience beyond the keg, bottle or can.
de Leon, managing partner of Brew Fest Events. Public
Attending and/or hosting craft beer events can expand
gardens, urban warehouses, and local hot spots are all
your reach and increase your customer base.
spaces that can add something special to your beer
A brewery needs a community of supporters to thrive, and hosting events could be the difference
event. Fort Point Beer Company has a small taproom that doesn’t easily accommodate a crowd. Given this, the
between having one and not. Success is getting people knowledgeable with you and your brand. u
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s c i e n c e
The effect of dryhopping on fermentable sugars and ABV What impact does dry-hopping have on fermentable sugars and ABV? Brian Dickson and Colin Stronge from Leedsbased Northern Monk enlisted Dr Lee Walsh, account manager at QCL to find out.
world, Northern Monk work with charitable organisations and local businesses and collaborate with breweries and businesses who share their vision of craftsmanship and quality to help strengthen the North. Northern Monk started brewing in 2014 and has since become an institution of innovation in brewing, with a focus on quality, which is largely monitored in-house using a variety of lab equipment including the CDR BeerLab.
by DR lee walsh
With this in mind, it is no surprise that head brewer Brian Dickson and Production Manager Colin Stronge
were keen to use their BeerLab in our latest study to
oused in a Grade II listed mill in the
investigate the effect of dry-hopping on fermentable
spiritual heart of the industrial revolution,
sugars and ABV.
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n article published in the Journal of the Institute of Brewing in 1941 by Janicki, J. et al discussed the presence of diastatic activity in hops and how
this might affect secondary fermentation on in cask beer.
Their experiments consisted of taking samples of starch
s c i e n c e
Table 1 : Dry-Hop Addition Rate and Alpha Acid %
dissolved in pH adjusted water (to approximate beer pH)
that the starch in solution was being broken down by
enzymes in the hops.
and adding Saaz hops at a rate of approximately 40 g/L. The research discovered that maltose was produced from dry-hopping in mg quantities in just five hours, suggesting
Ron Pattinson points out in his blog (March 2018), that Brown and Morris also commented that hops contain a noticeable percentage of glucose and fructose (around
Below: Figure 1. American IPA Sugar Vs Starch
3%), which was also shown to be fully fermentable after extraction from the hops and addition of yeast.[2,3] Part two of Ron’s blog post also revisits the work published by Janicki et al, further discussing the ability of hops to break down starch into fermentable sugars. To best investigate these two effects, we picked three beer styles of increasing dry-hop quantities, namely a session IPA, an American IPA and a DIPA. The increasing levels of dry-hopping – all via a hop rocket – should give increasing levels of diastatic activity and fermentable sugar addition and potentially an increase in ABV.
The results Below: Figure 2. DIPA Sugar Vs Starch
or the study, a sample was taken from the FV every 30 minutes, with two samples taken before dryhopping and two samples taken after dry-hopping.
All three beers were dry-hopped for 3-hours using a hop rocket and all samples taken were analysed for ABV, fermentable sugars (g/L), Starch (g/L), pH, and bitterness (IBU) using the CDR BeerLab. The starch measured on the BeerLab will include a mixture of complex starch molecules not broken down in the mash as well as some longer chain dextrin molecules. Fermentable sugars is a measure of glucose, fructose, maltose and maltotriose. The American IPA and DIPA were not dry-hopped before running the hop rocket and therefore not before analysis, however the Session IPA was dry-hopped prior to using the hop rocket and analysis. The hops used in
Below: Figure 3. Session IPA Sugar Vs Starch
each dry-hopping varied by addition rate and alpha acid % as shown in Table 1.
American IPA and DIPA
he two most notable results came from the American IPA and the DIPA as expected, both beers showing high initial starch which drops as
fermentable sugars increase. As shown in Figures 1 and 2 the American IPA has a starch concentration beginning around 2 g/L and dropping to a level of around 1.5 g/L, this drop is exaggerated in the DIPA with a drop from around 1.8 g/L to just over 0.5 g/L.
s c i e n c e
Table 2 : ABV During Dry-Hop Vs Packaged Beer
to during dry-hopping. Apart from the natural variation of ABV on the BeerLab
ABV during DH
ABV packaged beer
dry-hopping, however as can be seen in Table 2 there is
The increase for the Session IPA is negligible, however for
*ABV confirmed by distillation and density meter as 9.99%
(±0.1) there was no significant increase in ABV during the an increase in ABV value in the finished, packaged beer. the American IPA and the DIPA there is a significant jump in ABV, which correlates with the Sugar Vs Starch graphs above. To confirm accuracy of the finished beer results, the DIPA was tested by distillation and Density meter giving a result of 9.99% ABV.
The fermentable sugar concentration looks slightly
more variable with an initial drop in value followed by a peak, this can be explained by yeast being roused back into suspension from circulation of the hop rocket and absorbing some of this sugar. The peak in sugar concentration could come either from the diastatic power of hops on the residual starch or from the addition of fermentable sugars in the hops themselves.
t is apparent that the addition of dry-hops to a beer at the end of natural fermentation will contribute to a reduction in residual starch and an increase of
fermentable sugars. This can be explained by two effects; diastatic enzyme activity present in the hops, breaking down starch into fermentable sugars; contribution of fermentable sugars from the hops themselves. By increasing fermentable sugars near the end of
s mentioned previously, the Session IPA was
fermentation, yeast will continue to ferment beyond when
dry-hopped prior to initiating the hop rocket and
the brewer believes fermentation has finished, causing
as can be seen in Figure 3 the starch does not
an increase in ABV, which may not be accounted for with
exhibit a drop in concentration, there is however a slight
rise in sugar concentration. This may be due to the initial
dry-hopping breaking down all of the simple starch and leaving only complex starch molecules, meaning that the second dry-hopping by hop rocket could not break down any more starch, but could add some sugar. It is clear to see in Figure 1 and 2 that hops are
u Janicki J., Kotasthane W. V., Parker A., Walker T. K.; J. Inst. Brew.; 1941; Vol. 47; pp. 24 – 36.
having a demonstrable effect on starch reduction and
u Brown H. T., Morris H.; J. Inst. Brew. (The Brewers’
sugar production, which ultimately will lead to further
Guardian); 1893; Vol. 6; pp 93 – 94.
fermentation in the beer – potentially giving a higher ABV
u h p://barclayperkins.blogspot.co.uk/2018/03/why-dry-
than expected in the finished/packaged beer compared
CDR BeerLab â€“ Quality Control & Process Analysis in your Brewery l ABV, IBU, colour & pH in one analyser l Quick & easy to use l No calibration needed l Other tests available for liquor, wort & beer
Want to improve Quality Control in your brewery? Contact: Lee.Walsh@qclscientific.com
01342 820820 Brewers Journal BeerLab July 18.indd 1
www.qclscientific.com/beerlab 07/06/2018 16:53:41
s c i e n c e
Tackling the cost of microbial stabilisation head on Cold stabilisation of beer, also referred to as sterile filtration, can return significant cost savings over pasteurisation. In addition to providing an increased level of microbial security, and better protection of beer quality, cold stabilisation is by far the most efficient process to operate in comparison to pasteurisation from a cost perspective. This article from Parker Domnick Hunter discusses the four main areas where cold stabilisation returns significant cost savings over ash pasteurisation.
FROM PARKER Domnick Hunter
consumption, the future of brewing is looking increasingly optimistic. However, as these positive trends are driving
opportunities, there are also negative trends which need
he ever-evolving brewing industry is
to be navigated and which are driving the industry to
currently going through an exciting period of
change. With established markets buoyed
by the craft revolution and new beer
drinkers in regions typically associated with wine
The spectre of increasing utility costs have to be managed for brewers to remain pro table and competitive. With energy and water costs set to increase in most nations, brewers are being driven to implement
s c i e n c e
process efficiency improvements to remain sustainable. What was once viewed as a conservative industry and reluctant to change, is now open to process innovations
about the author
which can yield better beer quality and increased operational improvements. Historically, most breweries have relied upon pasteurisation techniques to kill spoilage organisms and produce market stable beer, however this process can be costly to operate and can lead to a deterioration in beer quality. Through recent developments in filtration technology, cold stabilisation is now the optimum process to achieve microbiologically stable beer, to protect beer quality at the lowest operational cost.
Parker Domnick Hunter supply final filtration systems to the brewing industry, both at the micro brewery level and for the large breweries. These systems can be easily automated and integrated into the packaging line and provide the optimum technique for producing fresh, quality beers at the lowest operational cost.
As cold stabilisation of beer may still be viewed as a new technique for some brewers and therefore poorly understood, this article will outline some of the operational aspects to demonstrate where process efficiency improvements can be achieved over
protect the beer from over-pasteurisation and to preserve
the complex molecular compounds which make up the
One area of brewing which is a perfect candidate for process efficiency improvements is the “utility hungry” process of final microbial stabilisation.
unique characteristics of the beer. Even with the evolution of ash pasteurisation, the risk of damaging the beer’s unique characteristics is still present no matter how precise the process control.
Key cost savings
In a recent technical study performed by a large UK brewery, the effects of ash pasteurisation were compared
to cold stabilisation. In this study, the same batch of
f beer is to last for more than a few days once
beer was split, where some was sent for bottling via ash
packaged, then spoilage micro-organisms need to
pasteurisation and some was sent for bottling via cold
be removed completely. Typical spoilage organisms
stabilisation. The bottled beer was then compared in
include brewer’s yeast, wild yeast, and speci c anaerobic
triangular taste tests where the sterile filtered beer was
bacterial strains capable of surviving in beer – typically
identified to have the most appealing taste and longer
lactic acid and acetic acid species.
Traditionally, pasteurisation techniques have been
In flash pasteurisation, the beer is pasteurised as it
relied upon to produce commercially sterile beer which
travels to the filling machine, so hygienic filling conditions
is capable of achieving the required shelf-life demanded
are required to prevent recontamination. The same
by various customers. Typically, this would be 12 months
hygienic filling conditions are required when running
for bottled beer and several weeks for kegged beer.
cold stabilisation, so we will focus on the operational
Pasteurisation involves heating the beer in order to
differences between cold stabilisation and ash as
achieve a microbial kill. Initially, tunnel pasteurisation was
opposed to tunnel pasteurisation.
largely employed, where the beer is pasteurised once
While quality improvements both in terms of flavour
packaged into the container – with typical conditions
protection and shelf-life extension can be achieved, what
being 60°C for tens of minutes depending upon the beer
about the comparative cost, or the “operational expense”
specification and the required “pasteurisation units” (PU).
(OPEX)? As cold stabilisation is a much simpler process to
Tunnel pasteurisation can be viewed as the traditional technique to stabilise beer, however the
operate, this translates into significant cost savings. It is difficult to talk in exact terms as every brewery
systems themselves are large, require a high degree of
around the world is unique and there will be variances in
maintenance and can therefore be costly to purchase
operational costs per hl, and utility costs (gas, electricity,
and operate. In addition, it is widely accepted that
water, etc) may vary too. However, by making some
pasteurisation can impact upon beer quality. So, in recent
sensible assumptions, and applying identical operational
years tunnel pasteurisation has become superseded by
parameters such as; flow rate, hours in operation and
ash pasteurisation – where the beer is pasteurised at a
operational days per week, it can be seen that for a typical
higher temperature, typically 70°C for a much shorter
brewery running cold stabilisation as opposed to ash
time – typically measured in seconds. This process
pasteurisation, the OPEX savings can run into six figures
development represented an evolution in an attempt to
s c i e n c e
energy. With cold stabilisation, as long as the line pressure is maintained at approximately 1barg, there is no
lash pasteurisers work by passing the beer through
requirement to run booster pumps. The electrical energy
a plate heat exchanger (PHE) at a required flow
demand and hence OPEX is therefore significantly
The PU level is a function of temperature and time,
thus flowrate through the system is critical. The correct pressures also have to be maintained to achieve the correct carbonation level and prevent degassing as the beer heats up. If these parameters fluctuate and cause the PU level to change, the process is typically stopped and held in standby mode until the issue is resolved.
his is the aspect where ash pasteurisation can compete with cold stabilisation as the consumable spend for running cold stabilisation will be higher
Typically, this involves dumping the beer to drain and
than ash pasteurisation. The increase in spend comes
water is circulated through the PHE instead.
from the requirement to replace blocked filters when
With cold stabilisation there is no reliance upon ow
they are at the end of their usable life. However, through
rate, temperature or pressure, and as such, any deviation
recent advances in membrane filtration technology,
in these parameters will not affect the filtration efficiency
the blockage rate of the membranes used and their
or the performance of the sterilisation process.
cleanability now makes the cold stabilisation process far
In addition, the hold-up volume inside the PHE is much larger and this contributes to much higher mixing phases
more economical. The primary cause of filter blockage is through a build-
in comparison to cold stabilisation, further accounting
up of colloidal material such as protein and carbohydrate
for increased beer losses. Even if the ash pasteurisation
agglomerations as opposed to micro-organisms. By
process is relatively stable, and the PU levels do not
optimising the base chemistry of the filter membrane, the
fluctuate during production, every time there is a batch or
likelihood of protein or carbohydrate binding can be far
product change, the increased phase separations cause
reduced – which in turn will reduce the rate of blockage.
a higher degree of beer losses and therefore significantly
In addition, by tweaking with the filter construction (to
increased OPEX when compared to cold stabilisation.
provide high filtration area and immediate pre-filtration), the possibility for further lifetime extensions can be
achieved. As can be seen from discussing the points above, the cold stabilisation of beer represents a far more
s outlined above the mixing phases are much
economical solution than ash pasteurisation when we
larger in ash pasteurisation as opposed to cold
consider these operational factors. There are other
stabilisaiton. As such, every time there is a batch
factors to also consider, such as energy required to heat
change, or change in PU level the water consumption far
the PHE and CO2 consumption – however these are
outweighs that associated with cold stabilisation.
marginal when compared to those discussed above. Even
In today’s environment where brewers are having to
discounting the increased microbial control and better
be flexible and adapt to market conditions, there is a
protection of beer flavour, cold stabilisation represents the
requirement to change the products being packaged
optimum choice for brewers wishing to achieve efficiency
more frequently. In this environment, the water
improvements and protect bottom line profits.
consumption and hence the associated increase in OPEX
for ash pasteurisation over cold stabilisation will become more pronounced. Flash pasteurisers work by heating the beer up to approximately 70°C. Due to Henry’s law, the process of heating the beer will cause the CO2 to come out of solution unless the line pressure is increased and tightly controlled. As such, booster pumps which regulate the line
old stabilisation is recognized as a tried and tested method of achieving microbiological stability both in the food and beverage and
pharmaceutical industries. As can be seen from the points above, the cold stabilisation of beer represents a more
pressure at approximately 10 – 14barg are necessary
advantageous process than pasteurisation techniques on
to effectively control degassing. The requirement to
a number of levels. As brewers become more aware of
run pumps against a 10 – 14barg differential pressure
the benefits of this process, interest and demand for this
ultimately consumes a significant amount of electrical
technology is increasing. u
c l a s s i f i e d
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19/07/18 - 21/07/18
Kent Beer Festival Canterbury Rugby Club, Canterbury www.kentbeerfestival.com 26/07/17 - 29/07/17
Liverpool Craft Beer Expo Invisible Wind Factory www.liverpoolcraftbeerexpo.com 07/08/18 - 11/08/18
Great British Beer Festival Olympia London www.gbbf.org.uk
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Peakender Bakewell Showground www.peakender.co.uk 07/09/18 - 08/09/18
Beavertown Extravaganza Printworks, London www.beavertownbrewery.co.uk/extravaganza 13/09/18
Brewers lectures Watershed, Bristol lectures.brewersjournal.info
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tickets on sale congress.brewersjournal.info
The monthly magazine for the professional brewing industry