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Tsingtao says urinating worker has been detained

Brewer Tsingtao has announced the worker who was filmed urinating into a malt vat last week has been detained by security services.

According to local news source Yicai, the worker is not a Tsingtao employee but a loader from a third-party labour supplier. He was filmed last week climbing into a malt vat at the brewer’s facility in Pingdu, where he then urinated.

Now it is understood the worker has been detained.

The brewer has also undertaken a number of measures since the video of the worker went viral, including monitoring employee behaviour and sealing all batches of beer that have been linked to the incident.

But the viral video damaged Tsingtao’s stock, with shares falling 7.5% last week when the story emerged, although it has since recovered and is around 1% down at the time of writing (2 November) from before the incident.

In addition, the JoongAng Daily newspaper in South Korea has reported that it has impacted on sales of its beers, with restaurants applying for refunds on shipments of Tsingtao, although it added that the beer’s importer had turned down the requests.

An employee of a Chinese restaurant in Seoul said customers were requesting beers other than Tsingtao.

They said: “I asked if we could get a refund for the Tsingtao beer we already bought, but (the importer) said that’s not possible.”

A statement by the brewery last week said: “Our company attaches high importance to the relevant video that emerged from Tsingtao Brewery No. 3 on 19 October.

“We reported the incident to the police at the earliest opportunity, and public security organisations are involved in the investigation.

“At present, the batch of malt in question has been completely sealed. The company continues to strengthen its management procedures and ensure product quality.”

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