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Soweto Gold aims to convert black S. Africans to craft beer
Time:15 Jun 2015
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Source: Globaltimes
A rich smell of fermentation wafts through the warm Soweto air as brewers prepare craft beers designed to tap directly into South Africa's new generation of discerning black drinkers.

The sprawling township outside Johannesburg city was once the center of the violent struggle against apartheid and home to both Nelson Mandela and Archbishop Desmond Tutu.

Soweto still has its share of poverty, and inequality and unrest have never gone away, but it is also home to the Ubuntu Kraal micro-brewery that makes Soweto Gold - a niche craft beer aimed at the country's wealthier black consumers.

"The microbrewing industry in South Africa was growing mostly in white suburbs but if you look the fanbase of beer is mostly in the townships," Ndumiso Madlala, the brewery's co-founder, told AFP.

"It actually wouldn't make sense to put the brewery anywhere else - we wanted to be genuine and wanted the brand to have the look and feel of Soweto."

South Africa has seen a rapid rise in craft beers as drinkers look for alternatives to the well-established big names such as Castle and Carling Black Label.

Ubuntu Kraal (Togetherness Ranch), which opened last July, is the only majority black owned and run brewery in the country.

It promotes Soweto Gold as "the first regional township-branded clear craft beer targeting the aspiring black middle class."

The brewery's metal-sheet walls are decorated with photographs of South African sportsmen and heroes of the long fight to topple the apartheid regime that finally fell two decades ago.

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