26 days of beer

G is for global warming

I’ve got to say, when I think of global warming, I don’t think of beer. Maybe it’s because I figure that something that’s so much fun can’t really have any link to the planet heating up.Global-Warming-2
Which, now that I think of it, is a pretty stupid view to take. Of course brewing beer, with it’s use of energy both in the making and transport of the finished product, would be contributing to global warming.

According to the OCB, the brewing industry is already feeling the effects of global warming. For instarising the rising price of oil results in that extra cost being passed down the line to the breweries and, I guess ultimately, us as the consumers.

Also, given that most of the raw materials for beer is grown in the soil, the warming of the planet will affect the amount that can be grown. Heat waves in several countries have already damaged barley crop yields. That means either breweries cough up more for the limited grain supply or use some adjunct and risk making a less palatable – and therefore sellable – product.

It’s a similar story with hops, which have seen a reduction in their alpha acid bitterness in recent years.
It’s the sort of thing that might make me feel a little bit guilty the next time I crack open a beer.

Categories: 26 days of beer, book, news

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