The idea, the recipe and the brewing process for turn all originate from the Bier Company, based in the Kreuzberg district of Germany’s capital city, Berlin. Based on the American model of ‘microbreweries’ and on the style of beer brewing culture in England, Belgium and Holland, this tiny commercial brewery, probably the smallest in Germany, brews an incredible variety of different beers in relatively small amounts, all under the watchful eye of qualified brewing experts.
As well as producing their own creations and carrying out individual brewing requests, the Bier Company also offers consumers a chance to learn about the basics of brewing at special seminars. The Bier Company also gives budding brewers the chance to purchase the necessary utensils to try out their own recipes at home. ‘The art of brewing’.
This is the motto chosen by brewing experts and founders of the Bier Company, Asbjørn Gerlach, Steffan Wendt and Frank Seifert, in 1995. The Bier Company deliberately distances itself from the assumption that high-quality beers are only possible by adhering strictly to the stipulations of the German ‘Rheinheitsgebot’ (the purity law). Through the production of turn and other new kinds of brewing combinations, the Bier Company is questioning the purpose and future of the German purity law.
The owners of the Bier Company see themselves not simply as enforcers of century-old standards, but as innovators. And innovation means having the opportunity to think and act freely. This is also why there are hardly any guidelines within the Bier Company.
Rather, we believe that, in principle, anything can be brewed. Restrictions to this approach come only from the kinds of accepted raw materials that can be used. The makers of turn will only use natural raw materials in all of their recipes. Artificial or chemical additives are barred from the Bier Company premises.
The consequence being that the Bier Company philosophy smacks of resistance. Turn has already sparked a number of heated discussions with the German Brewing Association which suspected that the hemp drink would undermine the German purity law and confuse consumers.
In line with the Bier Company philosophy, turn. demands a change in thinking. Consumers of the hemp drink show their willingness to break free of apparently inflexible structures in order to accept something new. Not only does turn. represent a new era in drinks, it is also symbolizes a way of thinking. Turn.-drinkers are prepared to swim against the tide, if they
think it’s the right thing to do. Consumers of turn believe and want to show others that the guaranteed quality of the product is more important than an ancient recipe that has remained stagnant for centuries. Turn epitomises the art of brewing which turns its back on conventions.
But turn stands for much more. This is a drink created using hemp blossoms as its main ingredient. As a result, turn represents the impartial use of hemp as an agricultural crop and clearly shows that it is not just a raw material for eco-hippies and drug-takers. If you choose turn, you’re not only choosing a high-quality product but are also consuming the blossom of a plant which uniquely represents the sensible use of natural raw materials for the future.
After a degree of toing and froing with the German Brewing Association, food regulatory authorities and consumer protection associations, in 2000 it was decided not to locate turn production in Germany. As a result of the massive influx of beer cocktails on the market, emanating from German breweries, the Brewing Association decided to make no compromises for this new type of drink.
Since then, turn has been brewed in Switzerland, close to the German border and is internationally known as ‘hemp beer’. According to EU legislation, once it has been reimported onto German soil it can be sold under this name without restriction and without conflicting with the German purity law.
Hemp is no longer the mysterious material that nobody knows anything about. Hemp has been developed so much that, in the last few years, even normal consumers have come into contact with many different hemp products.
This is also the case with turn, which is a forerunner in terms of the commercialisation of hemp products. Today, turn competes with a variety of new drink innovations. Unfortunately, the premise of originality is no longer enough in the European beer market. Quality, honesty, experience, steadfastness and international orientation are ultimately the attributes which persuade beer connoisseurs and hemp-lovers to reach for the little green bottle. Furthermore, our experience in the special beers sector has taught us to include other countries and cultures in the marketing and manufacture of turn, whilst remaining at the helm.
Trade, sales and production licences for turn are issued on a regular basis. This has resulted in the product itself turning into a mentality, without the need for massive advertising campaigns, as is the practice among large breweries.