Don’t Brew Beer at Home (or in Toilet), Prayuth Says

Gen. Prayuth Chan-ocha is what you might call a water man, at least in this July 26, 2016, photo taken at the Government House in Bangkok. Photo: Government House

BANGKOK — Gen. Prayuth Chan-ocha used his podium at Government House on Tuesday afternoon to slam craft beer, saying rules forbidding making beer at home ensure hygiene and safety.

Long-brewing sentiments frothed into public consciousness last week when a man was arrested for making and selling from his Nonthaburi home, leading the junta chief to pour cold water on calls for more freedom in the market.

“There used to be a lot of moonshine going around. Could they control the quality, the hygiene, or the strength of it? Big breweries can but can small brewers?” Prayuth said.

Read: Thai Craft Beer’s New Strategy: Keep Brewing Until Law Catches Up

That’s why the law only allows alcohol produced in factories by well-capitalized breweries, he said.

“You can’t just brew it in the back of a shop, in the back of your house, or in your toilet,” Prayuth said. “There have to be rules and regulations.”

Nonetheless, he said that he was not taking a side on the issue.

According to the 1950 Liquor Act, booze can only be made in a proper factory or brewpub. A 2000 Finance Ministry regulation said brewers must produce over 100,000 liters per year and be a limited company with at least 10 million baht in capital to gain legal status.

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Thai Craft Beer’s New Strategy: Keep Brewing Until Law Catches Up