With our Ipswich office now being located in the 88 Limestone precinct next to Pumpyard Brewery our minds naturally turn to beer…. laws.
The first brew laws were in 1516 by the beer loving Germans. They loved beer so much that they passed the Bavarian Beer Purity Law, or Reinheitsgebot (don’t ask us to pronounce it). The German beer laws said that beer must only contain barley, hops and water. Anyone who added other ingredients would be punished, without fail.
The discovery of yeast being in beer all along was accepted by the Germans and yeast was then also allowable in their beer, otherwise the German Beer Purity Law remained largely untouched until 1993.
We are a bit more relaxed in Australia as to what can be added to our beer. The Australia New Zealand Food Standard 2.7.2 – Beer – says our beer can also be expected to contain cereals, sugar, salt, herbs and spices, and a very long list of food additives that truly you would need a science degree to understand.
As a result of our more liberal laws as to what can be added to our beer, we aussies now enjoy a diverse range of craft beers.
The aussie relationship with beer actually backdates to Captain Cook arriving in Australia with his crew on the Endeavor drinking beer. The brewing of beer had been recommended as a method of preserving drinking water by brewing the stale water into beer, at least that’s the reported reason for brewing the beer….
Beer also played an important role in quenching the thirst of the Rum Rebellion. In 1808 the Aussie Governor provided the colony a supply of ten tons of Porter, six bags of hops, and two complete sets of brewing materials, as a means of reducing drunkenness, promoting beer as a safer and healthier alternative to rum.
So, following the Governor’s logic to promote the reduction of drunkenness by intake of beer, if you happen to run into one of our staff at the Pumpyard sampling the local craft beer please do not hesitate to say hi and test them on their knowledge of historical German beer laws.