German purity laws – not as bad as you think

31 July, 2007

Beck’s beer has a rather strange ad running on Australian TV (actually, I’ve not sure it’s on anymore). It’s especially strange with the sound turned down. The screen goes black and after a while the phrase “German purity laws” appears in the middle of the screen. Then a picture of a glass of beer appears, and you say, “Huh?” Eventually you figure it refers to regulations governing the manufacture of beer in Germany. It’s actually a fairly common phrase in the history of beer-making, but of course it strongly suggests certain controversial policies of the German government in the 1930s and 40s. Perhaps the phrase sounds more innocent in the original German?

Some nice Jewish lady was rather offended by the Beck’s advertisement. Let’s hope she is overreacting.


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