St Peter’s Without, which has no alcohol and 25% fewer calories than a standard beer, comes in two sizes: 500ml and 330ml.
The beer is a result of a three-year project by the brewery, which recognised a gap in the market for “a delicious, full-bodied alcohol-free beer that really tastes as good as the real thing”. Without is brewed to the same standards as craft ales, but without the alcohol.
Steve Magnall, ceo of St Peter’s Brewery, said: “The time is right to launch St Peter’s Without. We want to be at the forefront of this growing sector, which we believe will form 10% of the UK beer market within 10 years. We have made a big investment, but we know that Without is unquestionably the right product to lead the way.”
Alcohol-free beers are often de-alcoholised lagers, which means they are made in the same way as a normal beer but then the alcohol is extracted “leaving a weak and thin drink”.
The brewer explained that Without is brewed using a complex, proprietary production process involving both attenuated fermentation and the stripping out of residual alcohol by a unique process. ”Developing this brewing process was a lengthy programme with many false steps along the way,” it said.
In Britain alcohol free and low alcohol beers comprise less than 1% of the beer market, but St Peter’s believes there is the potential for this to reach at least 10%. “In Spain they comprise 25% so the range is huge.”
“We believe that everything points to strong growth – changing lifestyles, health concerns, drink driving legislation, etc, and that Without will stimulate this growth,” the company said. “Indeed, the relative blandness of current products has, we feel, held back growth.”
The brewery already has a wide range of beers including gluten-free and organic beers.