Alcoholics taught to brew beer to ‘stop them drinking mouthwash’

20th February, 2014 by Lauren Eads

A drug centre in Canada has taken to teaching alcoholics how to brew their own beer to stop them from turning to “rubbish” alternatives such as hand sanitizer and mouthwash.

BeerThe Drug Users Resource Centre in Vancouver is a not for profit organisation which helps the homeless and those with substance abuse issues, previously hit the headlines for installing Canada’s first crack pipe vending machine.

Now it has launched what is believed to be north America’s first program teaching alcoholics how to brew their own beer and wine, according to a report in Vancouver’s National Post.  

Mark Townsend, director of the Portland Hotel Society which operated the publicly funded centre, told the paper the idea was to keep Vancouver’s homeless alcoholics from turning to “rubbish” sources of alcohol like hand sanitizer or mouthwash, which he said was better than drinking rubbing alcohol.

Launched six months ago, the alcohol co-op supplies members with five litres of home-brewed beer or wine each month – the equivalent of 14 regular-sized cans.

To qualify, members must pay a $10 monthly fee, mix and bottle the batches themselves, and be members of the centre’s Drinker’s Lounge – a support group for about 90 alcoholics.

Townsend said the increased availability of the co-op’s beer has decreased violence in the area fuelled by alcohol while some of its members suggested the scheme had also reduced the urge to steal alcohol and provided a healthier alternative to other sources of alcohol.

One member, Kevin, told the National Post that drinking home-made beer was better than “drinking rub [rubbing alcohol] or some bottle I found in a bin somewhere.”

The regular brewing sessions, which use pre-hopped beer kits, have seen members brew Dutch lager and honey lager, and also Chardonnay wine.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Subscribe to our newsletters

Job vacancies

Sales Support Assistant

H2Vin Ltd
London, UK

Sales Administrator

Les Caves de Pyrène
Guildford, Surrey

Sales Order Processor

Amathus Drinks
Park Royal, London NW10, UK

Sales Executive (London – Craft Spirits)

Bimber Distillery
London, UK

Events & PR Co-ordinator

Alliance Wine
London, UK

Partner Development Manager - That Boutique-y Gin Company

That Boutique-y Gin Company
Field Based, UK

Head of Merchant Sales

Grapevine the Wineservice Company
Cumbria, UK

Business Development Manager – Central London

Marussia Beverages UK Ltd
Field based – London, UK

Account Manager – Premium Restaurants, London

Kingfisher Beer Europe Ltd
London (Central), UK

Field Sales Representative - Beer Innovation

Elastic
Various locations, UK

Events Executive

The Drinks Business
London, UK

Area Sales Executive

Gordon & Macphail
Southern England (excluding London) and Inner London, UK

Buyer – Wine & Spirits

Sipp
London, UK

Spirits Advisor

The Whisky Exchange
London, UK

The Global Malbec Masters 2017

Deadline : 1st August 2017

The Global Beer Masters 2017

Deadline : 1st August 2017

Global Chardonnay Masters 2017

Deadline : 1st August 2017

The Global Riesling Masters 2017

Deadline : 1st August 2017

Click to view more

The Global Organic Masters 2017

The drinks business is thrilled to announce the launch of The Global Organic Masters

The Drinks Business Awards 2017

Now in its 15th year, the db awards have become the most authoritative, internationally respected badge of achievement in the alcoholic drinks industry.

The Asian Cabernet Sauvignon Masters 2017

the drinks business Hong Kong announces its first year of The Asian Cabernet Sauvignon Masters.

Rioja Masters 2016

Now in its fifth year, the competition will recognise and reward the finest Riojas on the world stage.

Click to view more