Fracking Might Destroy the German Beer Industry

If there are two things Germans have traditionally loved, it's purity and beer. Now, according to a German brewers association, both are at risk because of a potential law that would legalize fracking in the country.

A 500-year-old beer purity law called the "Reinheitsgebot" is apparently at stake. The "Reinheitsgebot" states that German brewers can only produce beer using malt, hops, yeast and water. The chemicals produced by fracking could, according to the Brauer-Bund beer association, pollute water in the underground wells used by some breweries.

The Brauer-Bund beer association has issued a statement to Germany's Chancellor, Angela Merkel, warning her of the potential contamination.

"The water has to be pure and more than half Germany's brewers have their own wells which are situated outside areas that could be protected under the government's current planned legislation on fracking," said a Brauer-Bund spokesman.

"You cannot be sure that the water won't be polluted by chemicals so we have urged the government to carry out more research before it goes ahead with a fracking law," he added.

Germany is Europe's biggest producer of beer, with over 1,300 breweries that produce roughly 5,000 beers.

According to The Telegraph, it's unlikely that a fracking law will be passed before September, in part because of the pressure on Merkel's center-right coalition.

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