Singapore is selling beer made from recycled sewage water to help alleviate water scarcity crisis

  • Singapore’s Water Agency released a new beer that is primarily made from recycled sewage water.
  • The beer, called NewBrew, was created to raise awareness of the increasing water scarcity issue in Singapore.
  • Listed in the ingredients is NEWater, the liquid derived from filtered sewage water which is heavily tested and monitored to be approved for consumption.

Singapore’s National Water Agency launched a new beer that uses filtered liquid from sewage water to raise awareness of the country’s rising water scarcity issue.

Claimed to be one of Singapore’s greenest beers, the alcoholic beverage label, called NewBrew, uses recycled sewage water that is pumped and filtered from the country’s water supply. Due to Singapore’s water scarcity problem, NewBrew turned to sewage water as a way to address the rising threat of water shortages due to climate change and preserve the valuable supply of safe drinking water.

Beer is made up of 90 to 95 percent water, which is used in each step of the brewing process. Producing one gallon of beer uses an average of seven gallons of water. 

One of the main ingredients included in NewBrew is NEWater, a purified liquid extracted from sewage that is heavily tested and monitored before being produced and distributed for consumption. NEWater has been used in Singapore for about 20 years and is primarily used in microchip manufacturing plants and the building of cooling systems.

The beer also uses imported ingredients such as German barley and Norwegian yeast.

In a BBC News interview, customers at the Singapore brewery Brewerkz seemed unphased by the beer ingredient’s origins.

“It definitely goes down smooth. I could probably, if I wanted to, drink a whole lot of those,” one customer said. 

Another customer who was asked if he changed his mind after learning it was made of NEWater simply shrugged off the news: “Nope. It’s still good liquid. Every beer is good liquid.”


Featured Image via Magda Ehlers

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