Rhodes Microbiology students scoop R25 000 prize

Third year Rhodes University Microbiology students were victorious at the Intervarsity Brewing Competition held at the SAB Training Institute in Kyalami, Johannesburg recently. 

They returned with two first places, having won the speciality beer category with their Tsar Imperial Stout and also the FoodBev SETA Best Label Floating Trophy for designing the best label.

The team tested their beer making skills against nine South African universities with established microbreweries during a demanding weekend of judging.

Participating universities included the University of Cape Town, the University of Stellenbosch, the University of Witwatersrand, University of KwaZulu Natal (UKZN) Pietermaritzburg and Westville campus', the University of Limpopo, Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University (NMMU) and the University of Johannesburg.    

The third year Microbiology students brewed their own beer and nine different ‘brands’ were produced, for which they designed their own labels.  This is one of the practical courses offered in the third year and is always a highlight of the curriculum.

Brewing staff from SAB in Port Elizabeth provide mentorship, training and the ingredients needed to brew the beer.  This collaboration between Rhodes and SAB has endured for over 25 years. 

During the competition the students were given an opportunity to introduce their beers and describe their brewing processes in a short presentation to the judges and competing teams. The panel from the Wort Hogs, all accredited IBD tasters, judged all the beers.

The overall winner for the best beer was won by the University of Pretoria, each team member being awarded with a R25000, 00 bursary courtesy of the FoodBev Seta, to further their studies in any brewing related field.

The Rhodes team came very close second, no bad feat as it is the only university brewing in the lab, as all the other teams have dedicated microbreweries.

The Intervarsity Beer Competition started in 2008 as an initiative by SAB Ltd to educate students about the characteristics of beer and to demonstrate the benefits of joining the brewing industry as a career opportunity.

Picture: The winning team from left: Ms Margot Brooks, Dr Aileen Boshoff, Ms Sam Waterworth, Mr Travis Basson and Mr David Penkler, at the back is Mr Wesley Larkan.   


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