It had to happen eventually, and it doesn’t surprise me that Japan is at the forefront of space beer. OnOrbit has an overview of the release — very pricey, very limited, and you have to be a Japanese resident to enter the lottery.
Sapporo Breweries Ltd. is launching sales of the world’s first beer produced using malt made 100% from “space barley,” the progenies of spaceflight barley seeds, This limited offer is exclusive to the Internet and proceeds will go to charity. Applications to purchase the beer, which is dubbed “SAPPORO Space Barley,” can be made from December 3 (Thu), 2009 on the dedicated web page set up on our company’s website. Two hundred and fifty successful customers will be selected from among the applicants by lottery.
The “space barley” used to make this beer is the fourth generation descendant of the Haruna Nijo malting barley that was developed by Sapporo Breweries and kept in space for five months during 2006 as part of our collaborative research with the Russian Academy of Sciences and Okayama University with the purpose of achieving self-sufficiency in food in the space environment. Since Sapporo Breweries was founded, we have continued to create excellent varieties for raw materials, and we are the only company in the world that operates breeding/research organizations for both barley and hops. This, the world’s first sale of this “space beer,” is the result of our extended nurturing/development of the required technologies.
At roughly $100 for six bottles of space beer, this is not a purchase for the fainthearted, but I like the sentiment:
It is our hope that our customers will feel able to sit back, relax, and enjoy SAPPORO Space Barley, letting their minds drift through the infinities of space and into dreams of the future.