December 2, 2011 by Crafty Pint
A couple of weeks ago we published an open letter to the craft beer community from the people behind Craft Beer Limited, an association created with the aim of bringing together craft brewers and other industry people across Australia. They had published the letter in response to an article in the Sydney Morning Herald about the arrival of a second body, the Australian Real Craft Brewers Association (ARCBA).
We wrote an article at the time expressing our hope that the two bodies would find a way of working together or uniting as one and believe that talks are scheduled. We also said that we would publish in full a release from ARCBA, if received. We have now been sent such a release, which you can read unedited and in full below:
“YES, WE WILL LOSE FOSTERS, BUT NOT ALL IS LOST!
It is sad to again see iconic Australian brands transfer into foreign ownership.
It is highly likely that the Fosters shareholders will vote to accept the proposed takeover by SABMiller. The Fosters Board has said that it continues to unanimously back the takeover. It is expected that SAB Miller will then complete its take over of iconic Australian beers within the Fosters corporate portfolio as the group ramps up its presence in mature beer markets worldwide.
Yes it is sad to lose these iconic brands, but not all is lost as 100% Australian owned Real Craft Brewers are providing diversity, initiative and creating exciting new craft beers. Real Craft Brewers with real passion for Craft Beer will rise to the challenge and fill the void.
Get behind your local real craft breweries and drink Australian real craft beer!
Itâs time Australia promotes and protects independent 100% Australian owned real craft brewers and their craft beers!
So, a national body has been formed called the Australian Real Craft Brewers Association Ltd to represent those real craft brewers who practice the âcraftâ of brewing. The Association is passionate about Australian craft beer and supporting the craft beer movement.
Australian âReal Craft Brewerâ Definition
The Australian Real Craft Brewers Association (ARCBA) defines a real craft brewery as a brewery that practices the craft of brewing and must fall within the definition of independent and traditional.
âIndependentâ means they are 100% Australian owned, 100% family or individually owned with no ownership, control (or equivalent economic interest) or agreement with a major industry company or group that is not themselves a small or large real craft brewery or the majority of their revenue is not derived from craft beer.
âTraditionalâ means they produce craft beer as defined by the Association with particular reference to use of malt and other ingredients.
Common Use Definition of âcraftâ
Craft is a term widely used but, should be remembered, âis an activity involving skill in making things by handâ as referred to in the Oxford Dictionary.
Consistent with USA Definitions
The ARCBA definition is in line with the American Brewers Association definition of a craft brewer. The American Brewers Association is regarded as the definitive reference point in the beer industry internationally (Refer Brewers Association Stewardship Report 2010).
In the USA, the craft beer market represents over 5% of the total beer market, yet in Australia it represents approximately 0.2% [Editor’s note: we believe this should read 2%] of the total beer market. With the SAB Miller take over of Fosters, more than 90% of the total beer sales will be fully foreign owned.
Given the current interest in craft beer & Australian ownership, we are heartened by the formation of the Australian Real Craft Brewers Association Ltd which aims to protect and promote interests of independent craft brewers like ourselves.
David Hollyoak Chairman
On behalf of Australian Real Craft Brewers Association Ltd PO Box 432, Cammeray NSW 2062 email@example.com www.arcba.com.au"