Campden BRI

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Alcohol badge.jpg This article is part of the Spinwatch public health oriented Alcohol Portal project.
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In October 2008 Brewing Research International merged with with Campden and Chorleywood Food Research Association (CCRFA) to create Campden BRI.

Campden BRI is a research organisation that works closely with almost all of the world's major brewers and food and drink producers. Clients also include various UK and EU governmental departments and agencies, including the Food Standards Agency.[1] The services they offer cover four main areas: a core programme of confidential research for members, confidential shared costs projects programme, a barley and malt network and a strategic research programme with a network of collaborators [2].

According to their website they specialise in the following:

"We cover new brand development, sensory analysis, flavour tracking, routine and specialist analysis, auditing, benchmarking and consultancy. Our product risk management support service covers safety and compliance, together with brand and consumer protection audits. Our specialist services negate the need for expensive internal investment - offering value for money and proven results" [3].

Campden BRI Brewing Division

In 2009 the Department of Health commissioned BRI to research alcohol industry compliance with voluntary labelling codes developed by the industry. They found that only 15% of the industry's labelling conformed to the self regulatory code. [4] Perhaps unsurprisingly, Alcohol Concern's research into labelling standards found that only 4% of alcohol labels adhered to the voluntary code. [5]

Beer and health

The company lobby politicians on the health benefits of beer. [6] [7] BRI works hard to publicise potential health benefits of moderate beer consumption to the general public. They have a number of presentations aimed at the media and policy makers, particularly European MEP's. They have organised events for the All Party Parliamentary Beer Group including a 2001 educational session for MPs to give them a better appreciation of beer, and a session aimed at female journalists.

"Bliss up in a Brewery", a presentation by BRI's Director Dr Caroline Walker to media and MEPs, is a fine example of their research. In the presentation Walker claims that beer is not fattening and full of vitamins by using a variety of points including:

"In fact, since beer is made from cereal it has significant amounts of fibre, antioxidants, minerals and vitamins. Yes, VITAMINS! For most people this is a startling discovery, and bears further examination.[8]

Walker also urges us to reconsider the phrase "beer belly":

Beer is not a high calorie or high fat food – the evidence for beer causing the belly is purely circumstantial! Why not call it a "chip belly" or "burger belly" instead? I rest my case.[9]

The Supervisory Committee of Representatives (2011)

Dr Caroline Walker, Director of BRI and director of brewing since February 2009| M D Thomas, Chairman of Supervisory Committee| Ian Dixon (BRI), Chairman of the BRI Board & BRI Director| Dr Steven Walker, Director General, Campden BRI| Willem Van Waesberghe, Global Research & Development Director, Heineken |A Kennedy Diageo| Martin Cecil, Head of Technical, Molson Coors| Michael Lees-Jones, Head Brewer, J W Lees & Co| William Taylor Lion Nathan (Australian Brewer)| Tom Falcon, Shepherd Neame Ltd| Dr Robert Kennedy, Gaymers Cider| DrJohn Andrews, Briggs of Burton| John Moss, Botanix| Andy Tighe, Director of Brewing for the British Beer and Pub Association [10]


Research Partnerships



  1. Campden BRI, Press Release FSA Chair visits Campden BRI accessed 3rd October 2011
  2. BRI Web Site Our Research accessed 4th June 2009
  3. BRI Web Site Our Services accessed 4th June 2009
  4. Department of Health Monitoring Implementation of Alcohol Labelling Regime Stage 2(including advice to women on alcohol and pregnancy) accessed 7th September 2011
  5. Alcohol Concern July 2009 Message on a Bottle accessed 7th September 2011
  6. Dr Caroline Walker Beer and Health: Bliss Up in a Brewery, BRI website, accessed 4th June 2009
  7. Walker, C. (2001). ‘Beer and Health’ Bliss up in a brewery – British Guild of Beer Writers Event, 4 June 2001, London
  8. Walker, C. (2001). ‘Beer and Health’ Bliss up in a brewery – British Guild of Beer Writers Event, 4 June 2001, London
  9. Walker, C. (2001). ‘Beer and Health’ Bliss up in a brewery – British Guild of Beer Writers Event, 4 June 2001, London.
  10. Campden Bri Organisation accessed 3rd October 2011
  11. BRi Web Site Collaborator Network accessed 4th June 2009