Academy and institute merge courses

12 January, 2007

The Beer Academy has joined forces with the Institute of Brewing & Distilling to merge the two bodies' training courses and qualifications.

The academy, which has just added two new short courses to its training programme, will continue as a distinct section within the IBD. It will focus on developing beer education and appreciation for workers in the brewing, retailing and hospitality sectors, and promoting beer to consumers and the media.

IBD director Simon Jackson is to join the Beer Academy's board to help the organisation move into the institute.

Beer Academy chairman Rupert Thomson said: "It is apparent that the next stage in the development of the education and appreciation of beer is best served by collaboration with like-minded industry bodies.

"To this end we have been holding discussions with a view to the IBD merging the Beer Academy within its training and qualifications activities. These initiatives give us great hope that the aims of the academy to promote the knowledge of, and enthusiasm for, beer will move from strength to strength in the enlarged structure."

Beer in brief

Shepherd Neame's Kentish Ale Collection, a boxed pack of four 50cl bottles of its most distinctive beers, is now on sale in Sainsbury's (rrp £5.99) after doing well in Waitrose and Asda. The four beers are Spitfire, Bishops Finger, Master Brew Kentish Ale and Whitstable Bay Organic Ale.

Scottish & Newcastle UK has appointed ex-Hilton Group chief executive and finance director Brian Wallace, who is also senior independent non-executive director at Hays, as a non-executive director. S&N chairman Sir Brian Stewart said: "Brian Wallace has great knowledge of the hospitality sector and will bring a wealth of international and financial experience to S&N."

Cobra Beer is celebrating a bumper year of sales after the company raised £27 million to invest in the business and ran its first national TV ad campaign. Sales in October and November, when the TV ads were running, were 65 per cent higher than they had been the year before, Cobra said.

East Midlands brewer Batemans has become the first brewery in the region to gain accreditation from the Visitor Attraction Quality Assurance Service - or VisitBritain - for its visitor centre.

It is one of only six breweries in the country to gain the accreditation.

Anheuser-Busch has launched a gluten-free beer made from sorghum in the US - but so far has no plans to launch Redbridge in the UK.

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