First alcohol-free student beer drinking event to be organised in Leuven
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    First alcohol-free student beer drinking event to be organised in Leuven

    "As a faculty café, we think it is important to show that student activities can also be fun without alcohol," said Vincent Van de Cruijce. Credit: Flickr

    The Leuven faculty cafés will work together with AB InBev, the American-Belgian multinational drink and brewing holdings company based in Leuven, to organise a 0.0% Cantus, a first in Leuven, on 16 October.

    The cantus will start at 8:30 PM and will be led by students from various associations and faculties, and has room for 70 participants.

    “As a member of a student faculty café, we think it is important to show that student activities can also be fun without alcohol,” said Vincent Van de Cruijce, the general manager of HdR, the café for students at the KU Leuven law faculty. A cantus is a student activity, usually organised per faculty, which mainly involves singing traditional songs and drinking beer, governed by strict traditional rules.

    “The 0.0% Cantus is not only unique because we do not serve alcohol, but also because it will be organised by various faculties, student associations and LOKO, the umbrella organisation for all students in Leuven. Even the people from the city of Leuven, the university and the police have been invited,” he said.

    Every faculty café will send a representative to the cantus to show their support. “We want to show that the Leuven students and student cafés do pay attention to the responsibility that comes with serving and drinking alcohol,” said Van de Cruijce. “In recent months, the students of Leuven have mainly been associated with excessive alcohol consumption in the media,” he added.

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    The student associations are open to offering non-alcoholic beer varieties on all cantuses in the future. “Nowadays, there is often a choice between beer and water,” said Michiel Hamels, chair of the VRG student association. “But we would like to see if non-alcoholic beer is possible and/or effective,” he added.

    “We want every experience with beer to be positive. We started the non-alcoholic beer segment from a belief in the potential of the concept, the quality and the demand for non-alcoholic variants. This is reflected in rapidly increasing growth,” said Laure Stuyck, spokesperson for AB InBev.

    Earlier in October, AB InBev announced that it is making a conscious effort to promote non-alcoholic beers in the Leuven student environment during the first seven weeks of the academic year.

    Maïthé Chini
    The Brussels Times