The Campaign for Real Ale tested a micro-canned beer from Moor Beer Company in Bristol and concluded that the beer qualified as “real” ale under its definition.
Camra reported that the beer in Moor Beer cans still contained live yeast, and further test results showed that any carbonation was created by natural secondary fermentation.
It makes Moor Beer the first brewery in the world to be granted the “CAMRA says this is real ale” logo to use on a canned beer.
Colin Valentine, national chairman at Camra, said: “There have been a lot of developments in the brewing industry and Camra has been working hard to make sure that we understand them and how they fit with our real ale definition.
“I’m delighted that we’ve been able to show that micro-canned beer under the right circumstances can qualify as real ale, which means that more drinkers can get access to what we believe is the pinnacle of brewing skill - live beer which continues to ferment and develop in whichever container it’s served from.
“We carried out similar tests on key-cask beers several years ago and accepted those as real ale and we’re hopeful brewers will continue to innovate and find ways of making real ale as accessible to drinkers as possible through these sorts of developments.
“We look forward to granting the accreditation to many more breweries producing canned beers in similar ways to Justin at Moor.”
Justin Hawke from Moor Beer said: “I moved to England because of my love for real ale, so when I made the decision to can our beer there was only one way we were going to do it - fully can-conditioned with live yeast.
“We invested very heavily in our canning line and process control to get it right, taking a huge risk being the first to go down this path. Cans had a horrible reputation, but actually it is the best package type for portability because it blocks all light and oxygen from getting in and ruining the beer.
“It is also a much more environmentally friendly container, being lighter in weight, more recyclable, and safer than glass. We worked really hard with our designer Ben King from Ich Bin Ben to make the outside of the can as awesome as the beer inside. The beer itself is amazing, and getting Camra’s recognition give us a huge sense of achievement.”