Comments

Homebrew a serious health hazard

Written By : General Editor. The revelation that people can make up to $100 a day selling illegal homebrew is frightening for a range of reasons. The state loses revenue,
08 Jun 2008 12:00

Written By : General Editor. The revelation that people can make up to $100 a day selling illegal homebrew is frightening for a range of reasons.
The state loses revenue, the legitimate liquor manufacturers and outlets lose sales and the police have even more work to do.
But the most worrying aspect of this apparently growing trade is the risk to people’s health.
Homebrew is typically manufactured under less than hygienic circumstances. This illegal and highly dangerous activity lacks access to the controlled environment and standards of cleanliness that are required of licensed brewers and distillers.
Variations in temperature and ingredients can produce an alcohol that is extremely dangerous and it is probably no more than good fortune that there are so far no identified instances of serious health damage suffered by consumers of this potential poison.
The manufacture of safe alcoholic beverages requires a high level of expertise combined with proper facilities. It’s just one of the reasons why this activity is illegal.
We all know times are hard and that people need to do whatever they can to feed their families but crime is plainly not an acceptable option.
If we were to accept that homebrew sellers are just desperate people who need to feed their families, we might as well extend the same latitude to thieves, muggers, con artists, violent robbers and home invaders.
The law exists to protect people from crime and the sale and consumption of homebrew are highly dangerous activities that risk severe public health damage.
There is also the aspect of control. Licensed liquor outlets face strict controls on who may or may not purchase their goods. They are permitted to trade during strictly supervised hours. Of course there are no such restrictions applied to homebrew sales.
Homebrew is cheap, readily available and is often sold without restriction. There is anecdotal evidence of very young people being exposed to the dangers of this pernicious trade.
Its potency is unpredictable and its effects on families can only be guessed at while it can only be a matter of time before severe and lasting damage – or worse – will be its result.
The need to feed a family gives nobody the right to put other families at risk.
The police and the courts should deal harshly with this.



Fijisun Ad Space


Get updates from the Fiji Sun, handpicked and delivered to your inbox.


By entering your email address you're giving us permission to send you news and offers. You can opt-out at any time.


Fiji Sun Instagram
Subscribe-to-Newspaper