The Shocking Ingredients In Beer

I have to confess, I’m not a beer drinker, but there’s someone in my household that loves it, so I had to figure out the truth. Is beer really healthy? Why are the ingredients not listed on the label? Which brands can we trust? Which brands are trying to slowly poison us with cheap and harmful ingredients? All of these questions were going through my head at once at lightning speed. So a year ago, I started to research what was really in beer and after questioning several beer companies, reading books about food science, and talking to experts, the information I discovered was downright shocking.

I see it all the time. Someone who eats organic, makes the right choices at the grocery store, is fit and lives an extraordinarily healthy lifestyle but then drinks beer like it is going out of style.

Caring about what you eat doesn’t necessarily translate into caring about what you drink and this is a HUGE MISTAKE.

Before we get into what exactly is in beer that you should be worried about, let’s talk about how body reacts to alcohol in general.

Alcohol is metabolized by the body differently than all other calories you consume. Alcohol is one of the only substances that you consume that can permeate your digestive system and go straight into your bloodstream. It bypasses normal digestion and is absorbed into the body intact, where it goes straight into the liver.

Your liver is your main fat-burning organ. If you are trying to lose weight or even maintain your ideal weight, drinking alcohol is one of your worst enemies. The liver is going to metabolize alcohol first vs. the fat you want to get rid of – making weight loss even harder. Additionally, one of the primary functions of the liver is to remove environmental toxins from your body – if it is overtaxed with alcohol, the normal removal of these toxins becomes extremely diminished and can result in rapid aging, loss of libido, and other diseases.

The one thing that has gotten me before and I’m sure many of you – is the health marketing claims on alcohol products making drinking them seem like a good idea and an added “benefit” to your health. The low alcohol content of beer makes it appear as an innocuous beverage and something people throw back without even thinking about it. Who hasn’t seen those studies that say a beer a day is great for you (I want to ask who ever stops at just one beer?)?

 

So, inherently, alcohol by itself is not a healthy person’s best friend – but that’s just the tip of the iceberg.  Beer, especially American beer, is made with all sorts of ingredients beyond the basic hops, malt and yeast. There are numerous other ingredients used to clarify, stabilize, preserve, enhance the color and flavor of beer.

When you drink beer, there is almost a 100% chance that you don’t know what you are drinking (unless you quizzed the beer companies like I did). The ingredients in beer are not required by law to be listed anywhere on the label and manufacturers have no legal obligation to disclose the ingredients. For regular beer, calorie levels and percent alcohol are optional and for light beer calories are mandatory but alcohol levels are optional.

Michele Simon, a public health lawyer, author of Appetite for Profit, and president of Eat Drink Politics told me the reason that beer companies don’t disclose ingredients is simple: they don’t have to.

“Ingredient labeling on food products and non-alcoholic beverages is required by the Food and Drug Administration. But a whole other federal agency regulates beer, and not very well. The Department of Treasury – the same folks who collect your taxes – oversees alcoholic beverages. That probably explains why we know more about what’s in a can of Coke than a can of Bud. You can also thank the alcohol industry, which has lobbied for years against efforts to require ingredient labeling.”

I figured if the beer companies aren’t required to tell us the exact list of ingredients, I needed to investigate this for myself and asked them the pointed questions until I got the truth.

Slide1

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First of all, I was able to obtain a baseline list of “legal” additives allowed in beer from the book “Chemicals Additives in Beer” by the Center of Science and Public Interest. This list allowed me to ask specific questions about each beer I investigated. For example – beer sold here in America can contain several of the following ingredients:

  • Monosodium Glutamate (MSG) –  alcohol is already addictive with some people, but with MSG?! Holy smokes.

  • Propylene Glycol (an ingredient found in anti-freeze)

  • Calcium Disodium EDTA (made from formaldehyde, sodium cayanide, and Ethylenediamine)

  • Many different types of sulfites and anti-microbial preservatives (linked to allergies and asthma)

  • Natural Flavors (can come from anything natural including a beavers anal gland)

  • High Fructose Corn Syrup

  • GMO Sugars – Dextrose, Corn Syrup

  • Caramel Coloring (Class III or IV made from ammonia and classified as a carcinogen)

  • FD&C Blue 1 (Made from petroleum, linked to allergies, asthma and hyperactivity)

  • FD&C Red 40 (Made from petroleum, linked to allergies, asthma and hyperactivity)

  • FD&C Yellow 5 (Made from petroleum, linked to allergies, asthma and hyperactivity)

  • Insect-Based Dyes: carmine derived from cochineal insects to color their beer.

  • Animal Based Clarifiers: Findings include isinglass (dried fish bladder), gelatin (from skin, connective tissue, and bones), and casein (found in milk)

  • Foam Control: Used for head retention; (glyceryl monostearate and pepsin are both potentially derived from animals)

  • BPA (Bisphenol A is a component in many can liners and it may leach into the beer. BPA can mimic the female hormone estrogen and may affect sperm count, and other organ functions.)

  • Carrageenan (linked to inflammation in digestive system, IBS and considered a carcinogen in some circumstances)

During my investigation, I couldn’t get a single mainstream beer company to share the full list of ingredients contained in their beer. But I did get some of them to fess up to the use of these ingredients in writing so I’m going to share this information with you now.

Carcinogenic Caramel Coloring

Newcastle, a UK brand, confessed to using what I would consider one of the most controversial food additives. Toasted barley is usually what gives beer its golden or deep brown color, however in this case, Newcastle beer is also colored artificially with caramel color. This caramel coloring is manufactured by heating ammonia and sulfites under high pressure, which creating carcinogenic compounds. If beer companies were required by law to list the ingredients, Newcastle would likely have to have a cancer warning label under California law because it is a carcinogen proven to cause liver tumors, lung tumors, and thyroid tumors in rats and mice.

Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs)

Many of the beers I questioned contained one or more possible GMO ingredients.

  • High Fructose Corn Syrup (Guinness – unable to provide an affidavit for non-GMO proof)
  • Corn syrup (Miller Light, Coors, Corona, Fosters, Pabst Blue Ribbon, Red Stripe)
  • Dextrose (Budweiser, Bud Light, Busch Light, Michelob Ultra)
  • Corn (Red Stripe, Miller Coors Brand, Anheuser-Busch Brands)

Most beers brewed commercially are made with more GMO corn than barley. Many of the companies I contacted dodged the GMO question – however Miller Coors had a very forthcoming and honest response. They stated “Corn syrup gives beer a milder and lighter-bodied flavor” and “Corn syrups may be derived from a mixture of corn (conventional and biotech.)”, admitting their use of GMOs.

Slide2

Pabst Blue Ribbon responded saying their corn syrup was “special” and “made of carbohydrates and some simple sugars like dextrose and maltose.  The sugars are fermented into alcohol and CO2, and the carbohydrates, both from the corn syrup and the malt, remain in the beers as flavor, color and body components.”

Dextrose and maltose can come from a variety of substances that are sweet, but likely are derived from GMO corn because it is super cheap for a company to use corn instead of fruit or other non-GMO sources. With cheap beer – you are not just getting a cheap buzz, you are getting the worst of the worst.  Just like with cheap fast food – if you don’t invest in your beer – you will be drinking a lower quality product like Pabst Blue Ribbon that is made from GMO Corn and Corn Syrup.

In 2007, Greenpeace found unapproved and experimental GMO Rice strain in Anheuser-Busch (Budweiser, Bud Light) beer. Anheuser-Busch responded saying their US-grown long-grained rice “may have micro levels” of a genetically engineered protein called Liberty Link, but added that the protein is “substantially removed or destroyed” during the brewing of beer sold domestically. Don’t you think it’s hard to trust any beer company that gets caught using experimental food made in a laboratory? GMOs have not been tested long term on human beings and one of the main pesticides (Roundup) they spray on GMO crops are linked to inflammation, cancer and other diseases. 

Guinness

High Fructose Corn Syrup & Fish Bladders

Speaking of trusting companies, let’s get one thing straight, Guinness beer is no longer owned by the Irish, they are now owned by a large beer conglomerate called Diageo and manufactured in over 50 different countries. No matter how many St. Patty’s Day celebrations you’ve had with this dark stout, it’s time to stop because they use high fructose corn syrup in their beer (4/2/14 Update: Guinness Beer claims they do not use high fructose corn syrup any longer, but refuses to disclose ingredient affidavits or full of list of ingredients.) But, Guinness beer also contains isinglass, a gelatin-like substance produced from the swim bladder of a fish. This ingredient helps remove any “haziness,” solids, or yeast byproducts from the beer. Mmmmm… fish bladder sounds delicious, doesn’t? The sneaky thing this beer company does like many of the companies mentioned here today is create an illusion of using the best ingredients when in actuality what they tell you publicly on their websites is a complete farce. On Guinness FAQ’s – they have a question that states: “What are the key ingredients in Guinness” and the answer doesn’t reveal the whole picture – it only states “Our key ingredients – other than inspiration – are roasted, malted barley, hops, yeast and water.” What BS, right?  You have to call, email, question and know the right things to ask to even have a chance at getting the truth. This is insanity.

So What Beers Are Additive and GMO Free?

If you enjoy the occasional beer and wish to maintain your healthy lifestyle, choosing one without GMOs and additives is ideal. Unfortunately, most of the mainstream beers available have additives, but luckily, there are a few that don’t. For example, Sierra Nevada, Heineken, and Amstel Light (7/31/13 UPDATE: It has come to my attention that Heinken USA has changed their formula to use GMOs – I called their customer service line 1-914-681-4100 to confirm and asked for the list of ingredients – the man told me “water, yeast, malted barley and hops” – then I asked if their beer contained any genetically engineered material and he confirmed “YES,” but wouldn’t tell me what ingredients are genetically engineered. They recently changed their formula after my initial research that started in late 2012.) (8/1/13 Update: Heineken reached out to me personally to say their customer service department made an error in telling me and others who called their beer has GMOs. I met with a head brew master and have viewed affidavits from the company and confirmed Heinken and Amstel Light do not contain GMOs – they apologize for the confusion.) appear to be pretty clean (but these companies still wouldn’t disclose the full list of ingredients to me. They did say they use non-GMO grains, no artificial ingredients, stabilizers or preservatives).

German Beers are also a good bet. The Germans are very serious about the purity of their beers and enacted a purity law called “Reinheitsgebot” that requires all German beers to be only produced with a core ingredient list of water, hops, yeast, malted barley or wheat. Advocates of German beers insist that they taste cleaner and some even claim they don’t suffer from hangovers as a result.

An obvious choice to consider is also Certified Organic Beers. They are required by law to not include GMOs and other harmful additives. Organic beers also support environmental friendly practices and reduce the amount of pesticides and toxins in our air, support organic farmers – which is a huge plus. (To this day, the beer drinkers in my family haven’t found one they love so if you have suggestions, please let us know in the comments!)

Craft & Microbrews Beers – For certain local craft and micro beers, you can ask those companies for a list of ingredients and many of them will be up front with you. However, companies like Miller Coors are slowly closing in on craft beers and buying them up one by one… like they did when they created the unique popular variety called Blue Moon (the beer you drink with an orange) and Anhesuer-Busch did this with Rolling Rock and Goose Island Brewery. Make sure your favorite craft and microbrew is still independently owned and controlled before taking a sip.

In the end – if you decide to drink beer, you are definitely drinking at your own risk for more reasons than just the crazy ingredients that could be in them. The key point to remember is – if you like to drink beer and want to be healthy, drink it infrequently and quiz the beer companies for the truth. Find a beer that you can trust and stick with it.

For your reference, here are some important questions to ask your favorite beer company:

  1. What are the ingredients in your beer – all of them from start to finish?

  2. Are any of your ingredients GMO?

  3. Do you use any soy, corn, or rice processing ingredients? (Examples include: dextrose, corn syrup, etc.)

  4. Do you add any natural, artificial flavors or colors to the beer? (Examples include:  yellow #5, caramel coloring, red #40, MSG, natural flavors)

  5. Are there any additional preservatives, stabilizers and/or clarifying agents added to your beer during processing? (Examples include: propylene glycol, Calcium Disodium EDTA, anything ending in “sulfite” like sodium metabisulfite, Heptylparaben, isinglass)

If you know someone who drinks beer – share this post with them.

These ingredients are no joke. We must inform and protect each other from these industrial chemicals, untested and potentially harmful ingredients and it starts by sharing your knowledge with the ones you love.

Bottoms up!

Food Babe

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1,364 Responses to “The Shocking Ingredients In Beer”

  1. Ryan Raw

    Stick to drinking beer from Beau’s All Natural Brewing Company @ http://www.beaus.ca

    Reply
  2. evy

    can any one recommend some beers or where i can find a list of beers that we can drink?

    Reply
    • Craft Ledger (to evy)

      You will find most beers with the bad stuff in them are produced in the USA, because they are allowed to do so. Most if not all Aussie beer and many European beers doe not have any added preservatives or GMO ingredients… Cheers,

      Reply
    • teenage boy (to evy)

      We can drink all beers. Quit being so paranoid.

      Reply
  3. evy

    can any one recommend some beers or where i can find a list of beers that we can drink? does anyone know about magners cider? Thanks

    Reply
    • flutiefan (to evy)

      you “can drink” anything you want!

      Reply
    • Craft (to evy)

      Many Aussie Beers do not have any nasty stuff – This is the reply from Lion Co : It is Lion Policy not to use Genetically Modified ingredients or Yeasts or ingredients derived from Genetically Modified Organisms in the brewing of any of our beers.
      All brewing ingredient suppliers to Lion must have certification to confirm the absence of any Genetic modification or use of GMOs in their production processes.
      We don’t currently use corn, soy or rice in the brands we brew in AUS in any of our Lion brands.

      Reply
    • Honghu (to evy)

      German beer made for the German market used to have really strict rules and regulations for purity and such, so you could look into that. Check “reinheitsgebot” and “biergesetz.”

      Also, I’m not sure these guidelines are applied to exports.

      Reply
  4. Nikki

    Samuels Smith’s has many varieties and are all organic, the cider is amazing! Love all that you do, totally support the Truth!

    Reply
    • Kelly (to Nikki)

      I’m not sure if all Samuel Smith beer is Organic since they have an Organic Lager (which is good). What is the point of having an Organically labeled beer if all of their stuff is organic?

      Reply
  5. Scott

    You should do a similar study on wines, no?

    Reply
    • Kelly (to Scott)

      Yes please do one on wine as well. I usually try to find Organic wines to be safe.

      Reply
  6. Jamama

    If this is how you really feel why are you holding a glass of wine? Have you researched all the ingredients in wine?
    “Food Babe: Drinking alcohol is bad for you. Period. But beer is really bad, laden with GMOs (except for German beers, Sierra Nevada, Heineken and Amstel Light). Craft beers are seemingly OK, but really you are drinking at your own risk because they don’t label anything.”

    Reply
    • Cathleen (to Jamama)

      Jamama, she is holding a glass of wine and she has written this article because she knows that people like to eat well and enjoy alcohol too. We’re humans, not robots.

      This article is about “if you like to enjoy a beer, here’s this info,” and I have found it very informative. Now we who do go to a bar with a limited selection realize the value of a Heineken over a Corona, which, I’ll bet many of her readers did not know.

      Food Babe’s article on beer is very a propos because, as she states, many people pay attention to what they eat, but not what they drink. She spends her days researching this for us so that we don’t have to and I admire her greatly. Thank you, Food Babe! xxo

      Reply
  7. Scott

    I highly recommend Czech beers, they are as pure as it gets.
    Pilsner Urquell, Staropamen, Krusovice, Czechvar (the original Budweiser) and many more.
    Ask you local store if they have any of these items or other Czech beers.

    Reply
    • Rod (to Scott)

      True, most Czech beer is pure. The only problem with Czech beer here in the US is that it suffers from exportation( long shipping periods, light exposure, heat exposure). Think local when deciding to drink beer. Ask questions about the purity of their ingredients. Most local brewers happen to craft brewers with a very high standard in beer.

      Reply
  8. Evan

    Or you could home brew and just use simple ingredients yourself. It’s cheaper, fun, and tasty!

    Reply
  9. Carl

    Once I came to the word greenpeace, an organization that is neither green nor peaceful, I stopped reading. Greenpeace is driven by emotion and that is why one of the founders, Patrick Moore, left and that is why I stopped supporting them.

    Reply
  10. Mike

    A “shocking” display of very valid issues seamlessly intermingled with FUD, ignorance and scientific illiteracy.

    Reply
  11. Maureen

    Food Babe – You do not sound informed about the beer industry and in particular the craft beer segment of the market. As a matter of fact, the main focus of your article seems to be to slam beer. You don’t know one person who can stop at one beer? Really? Do you live in a cave inhabited only by overzealous fraternity brothers? The craft beer area is growing, and growing rapidly. Take the time to go to a quality micro brewery and sample some of thier wares. I bet you will be surprised. I hear people say over and over again “I’m not a beer drinker… but this beer is really good!”. Any brewery, large or small, will protect its ingredient list to prevent duplication of the product, so your concern in that area is off base too.

    Reply
    • Assistant to Food Babe (Krista) (to Maureen)

      Hi Maureen – the post is not talking about craft beer and I’ve been to plenty of microbreweries and rarely have I seen anyone only having one! :)

      Reply
      • Ross (to Assistant to Food Babe (Krista))

        For the record – I RARELY have more than 1 beer. At the very least you should acknowledge that you’re using a broad-brushed generalization and apply the principle instilled in the old adage, “Never say never”…

      • Becca (to Assistant to Food Babe (Krista))

        I like beer, but I almost always stop at one. I know plenty of people who will go out and have A beer.

        Ireland does not allow GMOs, period, and the Guinness brewed in Ireland cannot by law contain GMOs. I e-mailed Guinness to ask about the beer brewed outside Ireland, and they told me that Guinness’s policy is to not use any GMOs in their products at all.

        So I will continue to enjoy Guinness.

  12. Matt

    Thank you Food Babe!

    I love beer and really appreciate the work you did to expose this.

    Reply
  13. adelgazar

    It truly is definitely a very practical bit of facts. I am grateful that you just distributed this beneficial details along with us. Make sure you keep us updated in this way. Thank you for revealing.

    Reply
  14. Emery

    The comments here reflect much of what goes on elsewhere. I think it is safe to say that the dumbest elements of the American population drink a lot of beer. It is safe to assume that it is a perfect way to dumb people down. The average beer commercial reflects this approach. The dumber the better. Who are they appealing to? You hear arguments here that are typical of people concerning heath. People smoke, eat at McDonalds, eat GMOs, MSG, HFCS and drink fluoridated tap water. You can tell them about the dangers but they really don’t care. They will just keep eating it. It is my opinion that the ingredients affect their brains as well. And it’s really just the beer you hear talking! Cognitive dissonance is something people like to avoid. But there are some people that place their health concerns over their taste bud demands. This article does a good job of raising an awareness in an area that previously did not exist. Thanks to the foodbabe for raising our awareness of unhealthy ingredients in beer!

    PS – Do you think a big corporation like Guinness could lie? :)

    Reply
  15. Elizabeth

    Duchy Originals Organic Old Ruby Ale, made with Plumage Archer barley, all I can say is “Yummmmmmmm” !

    The sign of a good beer is it’s flavour at room temperature. Most North American beers taste foul at room temperature which is why it is always served chilled, as this hides the awful chemical flavour of them. Good ‘real’ ales don’t leave a chemical flavour in your mouth or stink on your breath.

    Reply
  16. Joy

    Bell’s beer is NON-GMO! They have their own farm in Michigan and do not use GMOs. All crops are 100% Non-GMO!
    http://bellsbeer.com/about/farm/

    Reply
  17. Craft

    We Aussies are lucky – if you like Lion Brands of beer, e.g: Fourex (XXXX) Here is the company response: ” It is Lion Policy not to use Genetically Modified ingredients or Yeasts or ingredients derived from Genetically Modified Organisms in the brewing of any of our beers. All brewing ingredient suppliers to Lion must have certification to confirm the absence of any Genetic modification or use of GMOs in their production processes. We don’t currently use corn, soy or rice in the brands we brew in AUS in any of our Lion brands.

    Cheers, Craft

    Reply
  18. Craft

    Lion Brand of Beers do NOT have any nasty stuff including GMO’s ; Company Quote: “It is Lion Policy not to use Genetically Modified ingredients or Yeasts or ingredients derived from Genetically Modified Organisms in the brewing of any of our beers. All brewing ingredient suppliers to Lion must have certification to confirm the absence of any Genetic modification or use of GMOs in their production processes. We don’t currently use corn, soy or rice in the brands we brew in AUS in any of our Lion brands.

    Reply
    • Roci (to Craft)

      If Lion Brand of Beers do NOT have any nasty stuff, they should simply list the ingredients. Going on a diatribe about GMO’s does not truly inform the consumer.

      Reply
      • Craft Ledger (to Roci)

        Roci ‘Wet Blanket’ If you put a little amount of effort, you will find the they do list the ingredients on their website! Also, if you also used a bit of common sense, you will understand they will not note the exact ingredients, as that would give their special recipes away!! Think more before for making any negative comments please!

      • Roci Nante (to Roci)

        Craft Ledger,

        You contradict yourself. If they don’t list ALL ingredients, then that does little good for the consumer. I just went to their website, and guess what? They DO NOT list their ingredients. Please provide a link to their ingredient list if I am wrong.

  19. Jess

    I love how you make sure you highlight the bad parts such as propylene glycol being in anti-freeze. While that may be true the concentration of it in beer isn’t enought to cause acute toxicity. The body will actually take it and break it down in pyruvic acid among other compounds which the body can metabolize to use as energy! Toxicity occurs at very high dosages but you would have to drink actual anti-freeze for this to occur over a very short period of time because propylene glycol is cleared from the body too fast!

    Reply
    • Wine Dude (to Jess)

      Not sure where you live but when I buy anti-freeze, it’s usually di-ethylene glycol, a very toxic substance. I have used propylene glycol as a transfer agent in a refrigeration system. In this case, the refrigerant could be freon or ammonia but the chill is transferred to food-grade propylene glycol, which circulates in a cooling jacket. As it is food grade, it can even be added to food as a sweetening agent. It cannot be used as an additive in wine; I don’t know about beer.

      Reply
  20. paul

    list all ingredients,theres nothing to hide.

    Reply
  21. Dave

    I think that if you stick to your local craft breweries you’ll be fine (and if you care at all about taste you’ll stick to them anyway). Most of them use barley/wheat, hops, water, yeast, the occassional spice, and not much else. Look for breweries that follow the Bavarian Purity Law (Reinheitsgebot), which prohibits the use of anything else.

    Cheers,
    Dave

    Reply
  22. hlthchk~

    I appreciate the hard work and effort in gaining a better understanding and knowledge base around beer. I am an avid beer drinker and was a fan of one of the not so health friendly beers. I have recently started eating better, non-gmo, more organic, non hormone types of foods. With this research I can now make better beer selections to continue on my track of healthier options. BIGS THANKS FOODBABE!!

    Reply
  23. Luis

    Anyone from upstate NY?
    How about Genny Light?
    I’ll try to see if they will give me a list of their ingredients.

    Reply
  24. Todd

    I recently have found that my dyshidrosis as well as my gastrointestinal problems are linked to sodium benzoate. I think they need to disclose the ingreedients. The law needs to change.

    Reply
  25. Nick Guerrier

    Any information On Samuela adams Beer/ He’s a patriot don’t you know! :)

    Reply
    • knowgmo (to Nick Guerrier)

      Hey Nick, not sure of all of their beers, but I know Sam Adams does use GMO’s. e.g., Harvest Pumpkin Ale and Angry Orchard Cider use high fructose corn syrup. The company does not take care in the quality of their ingredients so I stopped purchasing any of their beers.

      Reply
      • Kate (to knowgmo)

        I actually emailed the company too and the response took forever to come back and this was their reply

        “October 01, 2013

        Dear Kathryn,

        Our beers are made from: barley, water, hops, yeast and no sugar. There are no GMO’s in our beers. All of our ingredients are listed on our website.

        Sincerely

        Katherine Rees
        Consumer Response Representative

        I don’t know if I can trust that, I’ve since STILL not been able to find the listing if ingredients.

  26. Brenda

    Thank for taking your time to do your investigations &then sharing them with the general public. I am studying herbalism & there is an interesting point that was brought up by a woman named Jennine Stromkins who gave a talk on Male menopause at an aromatherapy conference in San Francisco in 2005. She brought up the point that the nature of Hops is estrogenic & that men that drink a lot of beer tend to show the effects of this with large bellies & breasts. Women who have just given birth are encouraged to drink beer to increase milk production. This would pose a direct threat to our children at a very sensitive time in their development. Scary

    Reply
  27. Katherine

    Check out 512 brewery in Austin, TX.
    http://www.512brewing.com/category/beers/core4/

    Reply
  28. Jason Koebel

    There’s nothing shocking about using clarifiers like isinglass to clear beer. It’s very normal and a common practice for home and craft brewers.

    Reply
  29. attila

    This is news? By the way what is the panic on isinglass aka fish bladder? Works well has been round a very long time. Look up Irish Moss another not to be fraid of clarifier .

    Reply
  30. Jimmy

    Wow…are you kidding me? A government conspiracy to fluoridate water to create an apathetic nation? You are literally nuts. That is the most crackpot thing I’ve ever heard. Tell me more.

    Reply
  31. Chris

    This blog post and (most) of the comments have made me have a headache.

    Clearly the FoodBabe does not know even the tiniest amount about the brewing process, nor does she even have an even rudimentary level of knowledge of chemistry.

    What she DOES have is a great ability to monetize fear mongering.

    There have been a number of well written responses that debunk her claims, and I anxiously await her errata post where she owns up to her mistakes and posts the truth. I have a feeling that I will be waiting a long time.

    Reply
    • Roci Nante (to Chris)

      She doesn’t need to know much about the brewing process. She knows enough.

      1. She knows that a large number of people consume beer.
      2. She knows that beer corporations do NOT list their ingredients.

      Nobody has debunked these claims. They are facts.

      Reply
  32. Bill

    I’m with Chris. Also, that’s a nice glass of fermented grape juice with added sulfides, acid, isinglass (yes, that dreaded fish bladder is back) or perhaps egg whites, pesticides and/or scrubbing enzymes, and additives should Terrior conformity be a concern (not to mention water with who knows what it in it, depending on the source, should the wine have fermented too strong). So maybe she should go back to her notes and really learn up on the whole fermentation cycle before writing a public scare article.

    Reply
  33. Ayla Mamutoi

    Thanks for doing research on this matter. I have been talking about this allot! YOU ROCK GIRL!

    Reply
  34. Owen Kelly

    I also find that most Belgian Abbey Ales are both organic & tasty. For the most part. Also, check out cask conditioned ales as well.

    Reply
  35. Fer

    What about TECATE and TECATE Light?

    Reply
  36. Kent Chen

    For me I am a beer lover but after reading this I’d be more cautious when drinking beer!

    Reply
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  38. soni opl

    Thanks,Food Babe for all the wonderful work you are doing on our behalf re noxious things found in what we eat and drink.This info helps us to make healthier choices in terms of what we consume.You are doing us all a needed and excellent service.Bouquets of roses to you.
    With sincere thanks,
    Soni

    Reply
  39. Maria Masala

    Do you have any info on Franziakaner Weissbier? On the box it says “in accordance with the bavarian purity law of 1516″. It’s imported from Munich, but still you make me wonder…

    Reply
  40. affordable color photo in nature

    Wow very beautiful photograph. very nice girl. i am very appreciate for your color images.

    Reply
  41. Jay Chapman

    Must add another Question to Brew masters, in your investigation list: “Is the water purified (by Revererse Osmosis) – to remove Fluoride, Chlorine and metal contaminants?”

    Reply
  42. Roberta

    GMOs aren’t bad you weirdo hippies! Learn how to science!

    Reply
  43. Rachel

    Great post, such valuable information. Who would have thought beer contained GMO’s. My husband has been drinking goat beer and the results have been a massive thumbs up from him and some house guests we have had around. Hope your family enjoy too…….. http://www.goatbeer.com.au/the-beer/steam-ale/

    Reply
  44. RSR

    That’s why i only buy local texas beers brewed by independent nano and microbreweries.
    Guinness only tastes right in ireland now… sad

    Reply
  45. Gianoss

    Thank you for this informative and readable (not convoluted) report. Will you do a similar report on mainstream wine companies like Barefoot, Yellowtail, etc ?

    Reply
  46. Namako

    Do you want to know what is in the beer you’re drinking? Brew it yourself!! Gone the hundreds of thousands of Americans that are following George Washington’s footsteps… Home brewing!

    Reply
  47. kathrine

    Great Lakes Brewing Company is in accordance with Bavarian purity laws, and happily provides that information on their bottles. As well as all the ingredients in their beers. Drink up!

    Reply
  48. LLA

    What about Stella, Anchor Stein, Modelo, Dos Equis?

    Reply
  49. Jeremy Fisher

    Eel river organic beer is out of California and has 3 of the worlds top 10 beers I believe. Best I have had.

    Reply
  50. Roger Ziegler

    Thanks for the heads up. Specifically, alcohol is regulated by the Bureau of Alcoh0l, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. Contact them or your federal legislators to get ingredients listed on labels.

    Reply

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