First and foremost: beer is going to cost more. As we all know, a glass of beer is mainly a glass of water. However, what we don’t realise is that it takes six litres of water to make one litre of beer, and with the drought of this summer, water is at a shortage.
More importantly, the price of barley is also on the rise as a result of the drought. Barley is the main ingredient of beer, in the form of malt, and the cost of barley affects the cost of beer greatly, explains Alain De Laet, owner of Huyghe brewery, best known for its Delirium brand, including its cafe in central Brussels.
As the price of malt increases by an expected 2%, matched by an increase on the same level of 2% on hops – another agricultural product dependent on water supplies – beer prices are bound to increase, De Laet says. And even although production of both crops is Europe-wide, so are the unusual weather conditions of this summer.
Meanwhile, for those who prefer their vitamins in a more solid form, the harvest of vegetables in Belgium this year is expected to be severely reduced as a result of the lack of rainfall.
Not only are home-grown vegetables expected to be less available, but so are imported fruits and vegetables which commonly make up part of the Belgian diet – the drought has been more or less Europe-wide.
The Brussels Times