In this day and age, everyone is aware of the detrimental impact alcohol has on their health — or at least, they should be! Short term effects of alcohol consumption range from engaging in risky behaviour to nausea and loss of coordination and motor skills. When alcohol levels reach a BAC of 0.15 to 0.30, blackouts and memory loss can occur. Ok, you might say, but I never let it go this far — I never drink too much! But how much actually is “too much”?
According to the Centers for Disease Control, even moderate drinking (1 glass a day for women, 2 glasses a day for men) comes with negative effects such as disrupted sleeping patterns, weight gain, and increased risk of developing certain types of cancer. A recent study initiated by the GBD 2016 alcohol collaborators and funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation concluded that, contrary to popular belief, there is no amount of alcohol consumption that can be considered safe for overall health. So, what are we, as Australians, doing to lessen the levels of alcohol consumption in the general public?
One way to tackle the ongoing problem of alcohol consumption has become increasingly popular in recent years: non-alcoholic beer and other non-alc drinks. In Bacardi’s 2021 Cocktail Trends Report, the spirits brand stated that the non-alcohol drinks category received more interest than any other. Similarly, Waitrose’s Food and Drink Report 2021 noted that searches for alcohol-free drinks steadily increased by 22 per cent. David Jackson — CEO and Director of Beneficial Beer Co, the new non-alcoholic beer company that, unique to the Australian market, brews like real lager — believes that the main thing holding Australians back from switching to non-alc alternatives is access. According to David, pubs and restaurants in Australia should provide non-alcohol beer front and centre, ensuring all patrons know they’re available. To accompany this aspiration, David is currently seeking to find a way that non-alcoholic beer can be served on tap. ‘It’s not only up to pubs to stock up, but also up to us brewers to think innovatively about how we can improve accessibility.’
When David became sober in January of 2020 he found non-alcoholic alternatives to be a great way to tackle the ongoing challenge. The motivation to start his own non-alcohol beer company came as David noticed a gap in the non-alcoholic market: he struggled to find a beer that had the typical mid-strength lager taste that he was accustomed to. Not keen on cutting any corners, David knew if he really wanted to succeed he needed to learn how to brew beer himself, which motivated his decision to move his family to QLD and pursue his passion by studying a beer brewing course at QLD TAFE in January of 2021. As the non-alcoholic beer brewer explains: ‘This is a real beer! We complete the whole brewing process and brew a 3% mid-strength lager — then, we work our magic. To remove the alcohol we use reverse osmosis filters. The tech behind these filters has come a long way so nowadays they leave all the flavours and tastes in the beer.’
Flash forward to April 2022, and Beneficial Beer’s first non-alcohol beer hit the shops. As of now, Beneficial Beer has a Pale Ale, Pilsener, and Dark Ale all in development. Beneficial Beer’s extended range is expected to launch early next year. Going sober without compromising taste? Keep an eye out for Beneficial Beer’s non-alcoholic beers!
Australian Business Journal