"Brewing is experiencing a renaissance. There is now a large network of hobby brewers in Germany - they are all united by a passion for beer and for the art of brewing," says DBB General Manager Holger Eichele. The brewers regularly exchange their know-how and recipes, but also raw materials and technology. "Because in order to brew good beer, experience and skill are of course important in addition to water, malt, hops and yeast. With their creative ideas and ever new variations, the hobby brewers succeed in creating enjoyable and surprising beers. Many breweries that have actively supported the hobby brewing scene for years also benefit from this transfer of knowledge," says Eichele. Some breweries open their yeast banks to interested parties or organise competitions for hobby brewers. For the seventh time, the German Hobby Brewers' Championship will take place on 9 September 2023 in Stralsund, where several hundred home brewers from all over Germany compete for the title every year with their own beer creations.
German brewing as a cultural heritage
Since March 2020, craft beer brewing in Germany has been counted as an intangible cultural heritage. At the request of the German Brewers' Association and other organisations, and on the recommendation of the Expert Committee of the German UNESCO Commission, the Standing Conference of the Ministers of Education and Cultural Affairs of the Länder and the Federal Government Commissioner for Culture and the Media in the Chancellor's Office decided to include the German art of brewing in the nationwide register. The UNESCO committee of experts paid tribute to craft beer brewing, which has proven to be "very versatile", especially in recent years. The close networking of the brewers among themselves was also positively highlighted.
A few weeks ago, the German UNESCO Commission extended the circle of supporters for the first time: since then, the "Schwalenberger Brauzunft" has also been part of the circle of supporters of the German brewing heritage. Brewing has been a tradition in Schwalenberg in North Rhine-Westphalia for more than 360 years. About 20 years ago, the brewing guild resumed the production of beer according to traditional brewing methods as a private association, and since then the hobby brewers have been meeting regularly in the local brewhouse to cultivate their hobby.