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Plastic found in beer brewed with water from Great Lakes

MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) - Plastic may be floating in your favorite beer.

A recent study from the University of Minnesota that tested 12 beers that used water from the Great Lakes during the brewing process shows all of them had microplastics.

Microplastics, which come from things like clothing and soap, have been appearing in water all over the world.

Kevin Wright from Third Space Brewery in Milwaukee says that in a city known for its beer, the water just might be the secret.

“Milwaukee has great water for making beer,” said Wright, “When you're talking about beer, it's all about the mineral concentrations, the city of Milwaukee has really good concentrations of good minerals and really low concentrations of bad minerals.”

Wright says he was unaware of the problem with microplastics. “I hadn't heard about it until that article was published,” he said.

The research also tested more than 100 water sources all over the world, and found that 80 percent had microplastics.

Wright has a degree in brewing and knows the balance of ingredients that make a good beer. He points out that you can't stop something that's everywhere.

But as Brewmaster, this is something that's now on his radar. “As a brewer we're always worried about the quality of the beer and how those can affect quality of beer,” said Wright, “interested to see if there is any affect.”

“Our metabolism can handle these things, we’ll be fine,” said Wade Dickfoss, a local beer drinker.

He may be like many beer drinkers that aren’t too worried about this new finding.

“I guess I was a little surprised but it's not going to affect my beer drinking,” said Dickfoss.

There are still a lot of unknowns about these microplastics, including whether the levels they found in beer are dangerous or not.

Also, researchers say what they found in the beer doesn't necessarily come from the water used to brew it, some might just come from the air or other parts of the brewing process.

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