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Annual F. O. Poupě Prize Awarded to Creators of Unique Technology for Brewing Non-alcoholic Beer

Prague, December 13, 2007 – The Czech Beer and Malt Association has, for the first time in its history, awarded a new prize in the Czech brewing and malting industry. The 2007 F. O. Poupě Prize, a new annual award for outstanding initiative in Czech brewing and malting industry, has been bestowed on a team of authors behind a production line for non-alcoholic beer by vacuum evaporation in the rectifying feed column. The award was received by Ing. Václav Potěšil from PIVO Praha, s. r. o., for the concept and design of the technological production line, PhDr. Karel Dvořák from Destily, s. r. o., which constructed the production line and realized the vacuum column prototype, and Ing. Jiří Fusek from Černá Hora Brewery, a.s., for its investment in the prototype and support for the whole project.

“In assessing the proposal, we valued above all the complicated nature of the project, which required perfect cooperation between all the participants: from the concept to the demanding process of preparing the technology to constructing the equipment. All of that occurred with considerable financial backing from the brewery, which was not afraid to take a risk and supported this project over the long term,” said Jan Veselý, Executive Director of the Czech Beer and Malt Association. “The project and its realization confirmed that it is possible to produce quality non-alcoholic beer that not only meets the harshest demands on taste, but also contains zero alcohol,” added Mr. Veselý.

“The winning project coalesces the growing demand for non-alcoholic beer in the Czech Republic as well as the increasing demand for pivovice, a distilled liquor made of beer,” said Ing. Václav Potěšil of PIVO Praha, s.r.o. “The effort to satisfy both ultimately led us to creating technology that enables us to produce good alcohol-free beer while also distilling alcohol that serves as the base ingredient for producing the afore-mentioned pivovice,” added Václav Potěšil.

The prototype equipment with output of 270 liters of beer/hour was installed in Černá Hora Brewery in April 2007. It consists of a vacuum rectifier, still retort, carbon dioxide separator, and alcohol steam separator and condenser. For distillation, filtered beer with 10 °P is used. After distilling off the alcohol, the beer is further processed on the technological production line that is an integrated component of the equipment. The beer that has been produced with this unique technological process is already on the market.

Until now, the Czech Beer and Malt Association had not had an award recognizing outstanding initiative or valuable invention in the field of science and research, outstanding legislative or political action, an environmentally beneficial project, valuable charity act, etc. We found our inspiration in history. The award honors František Ondřej Poupě (1753–1805), the creator of many important inventions, the symbol of the Czech brewing and malting industry, and the man who synthesized brewing production with theoretical knowledge. As a brewer and reformer of the Czech brewing industry, the founder of a brewing school, and author of professional literature, Poupě contributed greatly to the renown of Czech brewing and malting.

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