I grew up in Wisconsin.
Wisconsin people drink beer. Or, at least, that’s what I was always told.
My parents had a tradition. On Sunday mornings we went to church. When we came home my mother started preparing Sunday dinner, normally the biggest and best meal of the week. Often there were aunts and uncles and cousins joining us.
Dinner was served promptly at 12 noon. Around 11:30 my father would go into the kitchen and get a beer for every adult (over 18) in the house. On special occasions we children would get a tiny glass of our own…. the glasses ranging is size according to ages. An 8 year old might get an ounce while a 16 year old got 5 or 6 ounces.
One beer was all anyone had and my parents rarely drank at any other time.
I have always liked beer…. and when I turned the legal drinking age I may have had more than one beer on a Sunday. Wisconsin beer bars were rather notorious – and a lot of fun.
I love seeing beer taken seriously – as it should be. And now I learned about organic beer…. Why not?
What You Should Know About Certified Organic Beer
If you are a fan of craft beer, you might want to hear about a relatively new phenomenon on the market – its bio version. It not only sounds like a cool emerging trend but is also a good enough product, which would satisfy the demands of even the most savvy and pretentious health fad fanatics.
You are probably already wondering if beer can be organic at all because of the fact that it’s produced in big industrial facilities. The malty liquid, to which brewers add yeast in order to produce carbon dioxide and alcohol, needs to contain at least 95 % all-natural ingredients in order to be transformed into another product which would rightfully claim the origin. Certified organic beer is no different. So let’s look at what defines it and how we can tell the real deal apart.
Defining The Term
The popular and loved alcoholic beverage is usually made up of water, barley, hops and yeast. Water, together with barley, comprises 95 percent of the ingredients, so if you skip the hops or yeast, you can claim you have produced an all-natural drink. Since hops is crucial to the specifics of the flavor, there are now breweries that use its organic counterpart. Yeast is another story, and it’s really difficult to come across the certified kind, but since it is such a small part of the end product, its presence can be considered negligible.
If you are already feeling a bit confused, check out a great guide at https://www.bbcgoodfood.com/howto/guide/native/beginners-guide-beer. But in general we can call a beer organic when it is made up of certified malts and hops, with or without the addition of sugar, fruit and various spices. These ingredients are more rare and expensive than the traditionally used grains, and some are simply close to impossible to come across.
Since origin does not make a beverage more or less tasty, you are probably already asking yourself what’s the point in going through all the trouble to find these kinds of products. Well, organic here basically refers to the totality of all ingredients, which should be free of contamination by pesticides and petrochemical fertilizers. The main point is that environmentally-friendly farming ensures there is no danger to wildlife and humans, and guarantees that the soil used for growing the cultures provides a safe and healthy means of production that is vastly missing in conventional agriculture nowadays.
Environment-oriented is not a great selling point, however, and that’s an unfortunate fact that puts it behind in popularity as compared to the mainstream kind of craft beer which wins over the majority of the population with its taste, not its production ethics. That is why brewers strive to beat that fact by offering some even more creative and irresistible flavors, such as gingerbread, honey basil, and even a chocolate twist. Being organic is often considered a bonus, not the main virtue of the drink.
Why Is It Rare?
After establishing the obvious advantage of organic over mainstream beer, now come a few interesting questions worth asking, which you can find here. One such question would be why the former is so few and far between, bearing in mind it’s good for both people and the environment? Well, the main reasons for brewers of an environmentally-oriented mindset to not use ingredients of the better origin are their scarcity and cost. The latter especially should come as no surprise to anyone, as just a glimpse at the “Bio” isle in a supermarket is enough to see how expensive everything with that label is.
The brewers are faced with either of two choices. They can opt to go for smaller profit margins by covering the extra costs in order to sell their beer at a competitive price. Or they can choose to increase prices accordingly, placing most of the burden on customers. Both practices have been tried, not yielding many results in terms of boosting consumption which, in turn, has lead to the discontinuation of certain brand lines.
A Word On The Benefits
Despite the overwhelming advantage of mainstream over organic, things are slowly but surely moving towards a more sustainable direction. And there’s a good reason why. As people are gradually becoming aware of the toxic waste we ingest on a daily basis in terms of pesticides, plastic residue from pollution, as well as an array of chemicals that make it to water and the food chain, the fact that there is an awesome recreational drink that has a guilt-free, 100 per cent healthy option with terrific benefits is hard to ignore.
It has now been proven that certified organic beer aids digestion and is high in vitamin B6, which is key to nervous system well-being and overall body maintenance. Barley and hops are high in flavonoids, the so-called bioflavonoids, which play an anti-inflammatory role in the body and also act as anti-allergic agents. And last but not least, being free of toxic load it turns out to be a lot less taxing on the liver, as compared to the regular type. What’s not to love about that?