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Moving to Germany

I am in the Air Force and moving to Germany in Jan of 15. I was wondering if anyone knew how the homebrew market was there. I and trying to figure out if I should take my stuff sell or store it. I have three kegs 4 carboys and I already sold all my bottles.

Just curious

I haven’t looked into it enough to say I really know, but my impression is that the homebrew scene in Germany is almost non-existent. In Finland, we get a lot of the homebrew and winemaking equipment and supplies from other places, and almost none of it comes from Germany. I suspect that is because there are less reasons to homebrew in Germany: it’s not like good beer is hard to get, or expensive there…

There are very active homebrew scenes in Belgium, the Netherlands and UK. If you want to keep brewing, it might be great to hop a train or take a road trip that way to pick up supplies and do some sightseeing when you are on leave.

It is small, but there.

The biggest website I found was and largest store I’ve been to was in Dortmund.

With the cost of beer being sooooo low and most Germans complacent drinking ther regional styles (not a knock by any means) brewing your own isn’t too popular.

I have a friend that lives in Germany and he complains about not being able to brew. He is in lager heaven, but wants to drink ales. He has made some apple ciders and things like that because the fruit is good and easy to ferment. I don’t know his particular situation. He may also not be brewing because he does not have room to brew, but his main complaint is usually about getting ingredients.

Homebrewing in Europe is definitely a mixed bag, and local conditions dictate how the practice has developed. In the US, homebrewing evolved out of a desire for something better than the bland lagers which was all that was available in the stores 30 years ago, then expanded when people realized just what was possible. That is quite similar to the motivation in Belgium and the Netherlands, where brewing iconic, individual beers is celebrated. In the UK the “Real Ale” movement incentivized homebrewing. It took off as a reaction to the loss of traditional brews and brewing practices.
In Finland, home to the highest beer taxes in the EU, I’ve met lots of people who homebrewed in college, but the stopped “when they got a job and could afford real beer”. That is now changing, as craft brewing is starting to take a hold here.
Germany has always had craft brewing at a very high quality, and with typical German efficiency, has managed to deliver that to consumers at very low prices. The initial motivation just isn’t the same.

Thanks I think I will just store/sell my stuff for three years and get back into it when I get back.

Might be fun to save up and get new system anyway.

Where will you be stationed?
I was at Spangdahlem AB in the late 80’s, and we used to visit the Bitburger Brewery 'bout once a month.

And the snazzy Speidel fermenters live over there too…Get your exemption from the VAT and you might get a good price on them!

(I think the Military still gets that exemption).

Enjoy your tour!

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