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12-12-2016, 08:11
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I can’t believe I haven’t already published this stuff as part of my series on brewing in the UK after W II.

After all, what could be more fascinating than a load of numbers about malt and adjunct usage? Well, I find it fascinating. You can bugger off if you disagree.

I’ll start with the numbers. You’ll have to admit, they are an impressive-looking bunch.



Brewing materials 1945 - 1960 (cwt)


year
malt
unmalted corn
rice, maize, etc
sugar
total malt & adjuncts
hops
prepar-ations of hops
hop substi-tutes
bulk barrels


1945
10,435,212
245,751
1,332,032
1,784,064
13,797,059
244,822
714
139
31,990,334


1946
9,976,998
137,750
1,132,748
1,790,021
13,037,517
226,197
1,414
168
31,066,950


1947
9,454,253
92,974
614,335
1,601,186
11,762,748
217,759
1,423
191
30,103,180


1948
9,499,794
69,939
606,881
1,443,558
11,620,172
231,470
630
547
28,813,725


1949
9,087,351
60,709
505,071
1,303,212
10,956,343
233,158
164
74
26,744,457


1950
9,094,097
56,174
454,500
1,285,877
10,890,648
232,979
114
90
25,339,062


1951
9,282,152
57,681
452,581
1,355,152
11,147,566
229,106
178
82
24,870,564


1952
9,312,437
51,992
467,189
1,385,836
11,217,454
228,512
114
177
25,285,589


1953
9,085,688
58,012
426,396
1,405,154
10,975,250
225,569
335
222
24,789,130


1954
8,629,252
52,219
462,005
1,484,605
10,628,081
216,841
286
188
24,153,387


1955
8,635,522
46,556
478,150
1,529,256
10,689,484
217,716
92
27
24,324,623


1956
8,630,145
40,038
486,838
1,544,258
10,701,279
218,820
110
42
24,187,096


1957
8,872,468
13,834
532,214
1,564,673
10,983,189
215,114
91
28
24,839,755


1958
8,642,500
10,717
543,467
1,527,997
10,724,681
208,870
102
24
24,129,462


1959
8,885,364
8,007
590,006
1,569,002
11,052,379
216,037
107
29
25,023,044


1960
9,406,860
8,994
573,252
1,650,843
11,639,949
226,371
111
24
26,313,796


Sources:


Brewers' Almanack 1955, page 62.


1971 Brewers' Almanack, page 54.



You can see that while the use of unmalted adjuncts declined steeply after the war, the amount of sugar used was more stable. There’s a simple enough explanation. Brewers were forced by the government to use flaked barley during the latter war years. The idea being that flaking consumed less energy than malting. While brewers had a limit on the amount of sugar they could use in wartime, when they would have preferred to use more.

The quantity of hops used was very stable in the 1950’s, despite beer production falling.

It’s hard to make too much sense of those numbers. Far easier if you look at percentages rather than absolute numbers. Which is why I’ve derived this table:



Brewing materials 1945 - 1960 (%)


year
malt
unmalted corn
rice, maize, etc
sugar
lbs hops per barrel
lbs hops per quarter


1945
75.63%
1.78%
9.65%
12.93%
0.86
5.96


1946
76.53%
1.06%
8.69%
13.73%
0.82
5.83


1947
80.37%
0.79%
5.22%
13.61%
0.81
6.22


1948
81.75%
0.60%
5.22%
12.42%
0.90
6.69


1949
82.94%
0.55%
4.61%
11.89%
0.98
7.15


1950
83.50%
0.52%
4.17%
11.81%
1.03
7.19


1951
83.27%
0.52%
4.06%
12.16%
1.03
6.91


1952
83.02%
0.46%
4.16%
12.35%
1.01
6.84


1953
82.78%
0.53%
3.89%
12.80%
1.02
6.91


1954
81.19%
0.49%
4.35%
13.97%
1.01
6.86


1955
80.79%
0.44%
4.47%
14.31%
1.00
6.84


1956
80.65%
0.37%
4.55%
14.43%
1.01
6.87


1957
80.78%
0.13%
4.85%
14.25%
0.97
6.58


1958
80.59%
0.10%
5.07%
14.25%
0.97
6.54


1959
80.39%
0.07%
5.34%
14.20%
0.97
6.57


1960
80.82%
0.08%
4.92%
14.18%
0.96
6.53


Sources:


Brewers' Almanack 1955, page 62.


1971 Brewers' Almanack, page 54.




https://3.bp.blogspot.com/-9Jg_66oIoPI/WEqv5isLVxI/AAAAAAAAbDc/YuzH-3HoSYYE_spSb7ppDXci-IPJxcKZQCLcB/s400/Cornbrook_Barley_Stout.jpg (https://3.bp.blogspot.com/-9Jg_66oIoPI/WEqv5isLVxI/AAAAAAAAbDc/YuzH-3HoSYYE_spSb7ppDXci-IPJxcKZQCLcB/s1600/Cornbrook_Barley_Stout.jpg)
You can see the trends much more clearly in that form. Malt usage increased from 75% to a peak of 83.5% in 1950, then slowly fell back down to 80%. While unmalted corn all but disappears. Maize and rice usage dropped quickly after the end of the war then plateaued at around 5%.

The fall in the proportion of sugar used in 1949 and 1950 probably wasn’t voluntary, but as a result of government restrictions. Pre-war, it clocked in around 15% and you can see that when brewers were free to use as much as they liked in the later 1950’s, it returned to around that level.

The rise in hopping levels after 1947 is partly because of an increase in average gravity, though not totally, as the hopping rate per quarter of malt tells us. There was an increase of more than 1 lb per quarter between 1945 and 1950, after which it declined but still remained above the 1945 level.

The 1960 numbers – 80% malt, 5% adjuncts, 15% sugar, 1 lb hops per barrel – do look like a typical late 1950’s beer’s ingredients.

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