Fracking up German beer

German brewers argue fracking will contaminate key beer ingredient

German beer makers are voicing concern that groundwater contamination from hydraulic fracturing could prevent them from upholding Germany’s beer-purity law.

In a letter to six German ministers, the German Brewers Federation asserted that Chancellor Angela Merkel’s draft of fracking regulations does not go far enough, arguing that the brewing industry depends on high-quality drinking water, according to Spiegel Online. The current beer-purity law, fomerly known as Reinheitsgebot, and originating in 1516, requires beer be made only from malt, hops, yeast and water.

In the letter, the brewers said: “The legal changes planned by the federal government to date are not sufficient to guarantee the security of drinking-water supplies and to take into account the requirements of the Reinheitsgebot.”