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Don’t turn around

Posted on February 28, 1998

Like, wanna win loadsa free booze?

Of course you do. But this isn’t just any old booze — oh no sireeeee. Turn is a hemp lager, discovered by a couple of young UK music fans (Paul & Mark) while out clubbing in Berlin last year. They liked it so much that they began making plans to start selling it over here.

Hemp lager, you say? So it gets you pissed and stoned at the same time? “Well, you’d have to drink a helluva before you’d feel the same effects as smoking a joint,” explains Turn UK’s Paul Haddow. “But that’s not to say that it doesn’t have a little extra certain something to it.” Turn contains low traces of THC-the psychoactive ingredient in cannabis- because of the way in which hemp buds are put in during the brewing process. They used to do this all the time in Germany, apparently, until something called the Rheinhautgebaut made it illegal in the year 1516.

Then three German meister brewers started looking into the history of hemp beer, and began making it themselves a couple of years ago. Hemp is actually the botanical sister of hops, the widely-used brewing agent in beer, and can also be used for a number of other purposes.

“You can make rope out of it, paper, clothes — there’s so many uses for the hemp plant,” enthuses Paul. “And it grows so quickly — it takes hundreds of years to replace a rainforest, but you can grow the same amount of hemp in less than a year.”

Copyright © 1998, Melody Maker. All rights reserved.