It isn't just us that's got it bad. German beer consumption has continued its steady decline, dropping to just under 100 million hectolitres in 2009 (61 million UK barrels) in 2009.
Peter Hahn, from the German Brewers Federation, said "We hope this year that the weather is good, Germany does well at the World Cup and that plenty of people go to the pub or beer garden to watch the matches with a beer". The federation blamed the desperate economic situation in Germany last year for the decline. Germany, Europe's top economy, suffered a five percent contraction in 2009, the worst slump since World War II. A longer-term trend towards less manual work and more office-based employment had also reduced Germans' after-hours thirst, the federation said.
If that wasn't bad enough, there has been a sharp rise in alcohol related youth violence over the last decade, a new study released on Monday showed. Increases of up to 17% have been reported. The southern state of Bavaria had the highest increase, with the percentage of alcohol-related violence jumping by 17.4 percent from 2000 to 2008. Meanwhile the states of Rhineland-Palatinate, Brandenburg and Lower Saxony reported increases of between four and 12.4 percent.
One of the nation’s top criminologists, Christian Pfeiffer, said that Germany has a “massive alcohol problem among young people that has trended upwards” compared to other nations.Pfeiffer encouraged a blanket alcohol ban for young people under the age of 18, which he said would help reduce violence. Current German law allows children to begin buying beer and wine at age 16.
This was all reported in the Local, an English language on line newspaper. At least the local illustrated the youth violence article with a supermarket shelf full of wine, not beer, so that's something.
A bit of a CV. Tandleman is a veteran beer lover, local CAMRA Chairman and activist, beer writer, beer reviewer and pursuer of all things good in beer. He lives in the North West of England and London. Despite his CAMRA membership, he does not limit himself to cask conditioned beer, though he believes that cask conditioning, when done correctly and appropriately, brings a quality to beer that is hard to equal by any other kind of presentation. He is a strong supporter of Northern methods of beer dispense and avidly detests poorly presented beer and dislikes pasteurisation. He regularly visits Germany, has conducted corporate British and German beer tastings for CAMRA at the Great British Beer Festival where he has worked for years on Biere Sans Frontieres and was Deputy Organiser at CAMRA's very successful National Winter Ales Festival in 2009, 2010, 2011 and 2012 and at the Manchester Beer and Cider Festival from 2013 to date. He admires good brewers wherever they are and has travelled extensively in pursuit of good beer to drink.
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