Why beer matters so much for Europe

Why beer matters so much for Europe

Why beer matters so much for europe

Sometimes it can be hard to say what Europe is. Even today, there are debates about the defining characteristics of the continent and its people over centuries of history.

However, if one had to conjure an archetypal image of Europeans down the ages, it might well involve people drinking beer.

Whether from a glass, a tankard, a bottle or a can, beer is engrained in European culture and society. It is delicious and refreshing, and crucially, it brings people together. Whoever you are, whatever your background, you can enjoy a beer with friends and family in any situation.

Beer is more than just a beverage. It is a cultural institution, a social lubricant and a symbol of conviviality. And for Europeans, beer isn’t just a drink; it’s a way of life, a cornerstone of their collective identity.

Step into any European country, from the frothy shores of Spain to the hop-filled fields of the Czech Republic, and you’ll find beer woven into the very fabric of society. It’s there in the bustling beer gardens of Munich, where jovial revellers hoist steins to celebrate life’s simple pleasures. It’s there in the cosy pubs of Ireland, where the ale flows freely and the banter never ceases. And it’s there in the ancient monasteries of Belgium, where monks brew liquid gold with a reverence usually reserved for religious rites.

Why is beer so integral to Europe’s culture and society? The answer lies in its rich history, its unparalleled diversity, and its ability to forge friendships like nothing else can.

Beer has been a part of European culture for millennia, brewed in monasteries, taverns, and family-run breweries, telling a story of tradition and craftsmanship passed down through generations. And today, the brewing sector is a vibrant part of the economy, creating jobs and generating revenue along the value chain.

But perhaps the most important aspect of beer’s role in European society is its ability to foster social connections. Whether it’s drinking with friends after a long day’s work or bonding with strangers over a shared love of craft brews, beer can break down barriers and bring people together.

This sense of community is at the heart of The Brewers of Europe Manifesto for a sustainable brewing future.

Our Manifesto includes seven asks of the European Union over the next mandate, including a call on policymakers to recognise in alcohol and other policies the intrinsic nature of beer, a low-alcohol beverage that has a unique position in the market, in culture and in society.

We also call on the EU to maintain Europe’s position as a leading beer-producing region. There is no beverage more synonymous with Europe than beer.

As we head towards the European Parliament elections, let us raise a glass to the drink that defines Europe – and look ahead to its ongoing role in bringing people together. Cheers!