Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Fuller's Organic Honeydew Beer - Review - Certified Organic Alcohol Series: Part 1

Posted by Amanda Villaruel |
Welcome to the first part of the certified organic alcohol series. Have you ever tried organic beer? Or maybe bio-dynamic wine?
Certified organic alcohol series: reviews and information
Organic beer

Disclaimer: This blog post is a review and provide general information. I have not been paid/compensated to write this review. 

First of all, what makes beer certified organic?

In organic farming, farmers must follow a set of standards to certify their agricultural products as organic, including barley and hops (for the beer). There are organic standards in for instance the EU, and then you have the Soil Association in the UK that has its own standards, which according to them exceed the UK government's minimum requirements.

Click here to read about eco-labels (EU Organic, Soil Association, USDA with more).
Eco-labels relevant for alcohol, including Soil Association, USDA, EU Organic and KRAV
Eco-labels relevant
for alcohol

In general - organic standards require restricted use of pesticides (or none at all), and the use of genetically modified (GM) crops and ingredients are banned.

Instead of using artificial chemical fertilizers, the farmers use compost to develop a healthy soil (Soil Association), which should be better in a sustainability perspective.

Heard about companion planting? Well, that's also a practice in organic agriculture to provide biodiversity and as a pest or disease control (and one of the ways of reducing pesticides).1

If we transfer this information to Soil Association certified organic beer, the ingredients barley and hops must be free of synthetic fertilizers, must not come from GM crops and there has been a restricted use of pesticides.2

Have in mind though that an eco-label doesn't automatically mean that the ingredients are 100% organic.

To be classified as organic, at least 95% of the ingredients must be organic (depending on which certification body we're talking about, but USDA, EU Organic and Soil Association operates with this percentage).

Read: Urban farming project in Oslo - weeding and sowing lettuce seeds.

Information about and review of Fuller's Organic Honeydew Beer

I don't even drink that much beer, but if I do - I prefer light beers. There wasn't exactly an abundance of organic beer at my local alcohol shop. But one of the few organic beers that was on the shelf was the Fuller's Organic Honeydew.

Fuller's is an established brewery in London, and has been producing beer for more than 160 years.

According to Fuller's, their honeydew beer is 100% organic and is approved by the Soil Association. The organic honey is imported from Brazil, and the English malt and hops used is also organic.3
Fuller's Organic Honeydew Beer
Fuller's Organic Honeydew Beer

Type: Golden ale

Certification: Soil Association.

Taste: The taste had a subtle sweetness (like caramel) with a light bitter finish. Since the beer contained honeydew, I expected it to be sweeter and was frankly skeptic. But the taste was actually balanced, refreshing, and surprisingly - easy to drink. And when I say easy to drink, I mean that it went drinking-juice fast.

The honeydew beer is a good, light summer beer, and went well with the fresh bread and parmesan. Parmesan is a bit salty, so the combination of parmesan and the honeydew beer was delicious.

Continue to read:
Recipe for yummy beet hummus.

How to reduce your meat consumption, even for the lazy cook.


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