Categorized | Beer, News

State Accuses Brewers of Spiking Their Beer

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The country’s top drug and alcohol specialist on Friday accused brewers of adding pure alcohol to their products, a charge rejected by firms in their latest spat with regulators.

“In general, [Russian] beer and canned low-alcohol cocktails are a pure chemical weapon. Alcohol is added at a certain stage … to make it stronger,” said Yevgeny Bryun, the Health and Social Development Ministry’s top substance-abuse official, Interfax reported.

The government has tripled excise duties on beer as part of President Dmitry Medvedev’s campaign to curb alcohol abuse, a measure that brewers complain will lead to mass layoffs.

Bryun did not mention any brewers by name, but in an earlier interview with Interfax he said alcohol was being added to strong beers to speed up the fermentation process.

The Russian Beer Union said Bryun’s comments were misleading and asked him to publicly retract them.

“It creates an impression that [the comments] have something else as an object rather than Russians’ health,” said Daniil Briman, vice president of corporate affairs at the country’s top brewer, Carlsberg-owned Baltika.

He was speaking ahead of the lengthy New Year’s and Orthodox Christmas holidays.

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Thursday, November 23, 12:04 am

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