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tpusltn
February 19, 2004, 01:57 AM
BD Beer: source BBC

Bangladesh 'beer' tests alcohol ban

By Roland Buerk
BBC correspondent in Dhaka



The makers of the malt drinks say they are not breaking any laws
It looks like beer, it tastes like beer, but in law at least it is a malt beverage.
A company in Bangladesh believes it has found a legal loophole to get around the Islamic country's ban on alcoholic drinks.

But their discovery has created a furore among Islamic parties and the threat of legal action from at least one leading international brewer.

"A friend at the Department of Narcotics Control gave us the idea," said Shameem Islam, the managing director of Crown Beverages.


It is very tasty - just like beer

Mohammed Iqbal Hussain
Dhaka diner
"We would never have thought of this without them. We make it in a similar way to beer, but it is definitely not beer because it contains less than 5% alcohol."

The company is using the wording of Bangladesh's Drug Control Act 1990 to justify the sale.

The act outlaws beer, but defines it as a malt and hops-based drink produced by a brewing process and containing at least 5% - and not more than 8.5% - alcohol.

The drafting was intended to ensure medicines containing alcohol would be exempt from the law.

One step ahead


The drinks are being marketed as Crown and Hunter and the cans bear a striking resemblance to famous international beer brands.

We will of course look more closely into the matter and take legal action to protect our rights

Carlsberg spokeswoman Margrethe Skov

But again Shameem Islam believes he is one step ahead.

"That was deliberate," he says, "we checked and found Foster's and Carlsberg never registered their brands in Bangladesh, so we took the opportunity to register first."

Carlsberg told BBC News Online they were not impressed.

Spokeswoman Margrethe Skov said Crown and Hunter's new drink was an apparent violation of the company's trade mark and brand.

"We will of course look more closely into the matter and take legal action to protect our rights," she said.

"In general round the world a well-known trademark or brand like Carlsberg is protected even if it is not registered in a particular country," she said.



Islamic parties want to stop the increasing popularity of malt drinks
So far Crown and Hunter have gone on sale only in the capital, Dhaka, but demand is so high the suppliers are struggling to keep up and many shops have run out of stock.

Evidence of that is not hard to find.

Mohammed Iqbal Hussain is drinking a can of Hunter with his lunch at a café.

"It is very tasty," he said, "just like beer."

Ban sought 'immediately'

But religious groups are protesting against the flouting of Islam's strict prohibition on alcohol.

Fazlul Huq Amini MP is chairman of Bangladesh Islami Oikya Jote, an Islamic party which is part of the ruling coalition.

"We always stand against all kinds of alcoholic drinks in Bangladesh," he said, "so we will ask the government to test it.

The young and children are becoming crazed to drink it, and are drawn in by the colourful adverts for these alcoholic drinks

Delwar Hossain Sayeedi MP
"If there is any alcohol we strongly advise the government to ban this product immediately. We will be watching their progress."

Mr Hussain is supported by Delwar Hossain Sayeedi, an MP for Jamaat-e-Islam, which is also a member of the governing alliance.

He recently handed in a written motion to parliament's Speaker.

"These two drinks have spread throughout the country," the letter said, "and I urge the government to stop the production and marketing of these drinks immediately and to take legal steps against the company concerned.

"The four party alliance is trying to enhance religious and social values but some evil is trying to attack those values.

"The young and children are becoming crazed to drink it, and are drawn in by the colourful adverts for these alcoholic drinks.


"This causes social problems," he said.

capslock
February 19, 2004, 02:18 AM
Um, thanks for sharing, but there is an off-topic forum for these topics, please stick to only discussing the Bangladesh National team and its matches here.

chinaman
February 19, 2004, 02:31 AM
That's fine. I'll move it to the Forget Cricket forum.

James90
February 19, 2004, 04:18 AM
tpusltn....i hope your the right person but how's Nazim bhai doing? Any chance of his popping in this series?

[Edited on 19-2-2004 by Habibul_fan]

Sami
February 19, 2004, 04:32 AM
Beer doesnt have a high alcoholic count anyways... however, the damn thing stinks so bad... disgusting... Its ironic that I detaste beer living in the land of beer right now...

Shubho
February 19, 2004, 12:42 PM
radical, man! you can't diss beer like that. i'm an austrian-bangladeshi, and i grew up on beer! its lovely taste reminds me of the 'old country'.

of course, it's an acquired taste. you either like it or you don't. just like marmalade, marmite or korolla, potol, lau, kumra (yuck to all of those).

Orpheus
February 19, 2004, 12:54 PM
Korolla is awesome...she was my first love... Shader Lau banailo moray hungry!

[Edited on 19-2-2004 by Orpheus : damn I wasted my 600th post on korola.. ]

oracle
February 19, 2004, 12:56 PM
I simply Love Korolla. Definetely an acquired taste.:)

Sami
February 19, 2004, 01:24 PM
Originally posted by Shubho
radical, man! you can't diss beer like that. i'm an austrian-bangladeshi, and i grew up on beer! its lovely taste reminds me of the 'old country'.

of course, it's an acquired taste. you either like it or you don't. just like marmalade, marmite or korolla, potol, lau, kumra (yuck to all of those).

It just has to be an aquired taste... one taste that I do NOT wish to aquire... I will puke 3 times before I start getting that stuff down my throat... ;)

I dont have anything agianst other ppl drinking beer as long as they dont visit my place with the stink coming out of them right after a drink...

Orpheus
February 19, 2004, 01:59 PM
I will puke 3 times before I start getting that stuff down my throat...

Not man enough? huh!

Funny thing, I watched an episode of Blind date where the girl dumped the dude cuz he couldn't take sip of taquilla mixed with a bottle of beer! Whitey puked like there was no tomorrow! The girl commented that she rather be alone than be with a wuss!

Sami
February 19, 2004, 02:07 PM
i wud rather be alone than be with that kinda girl...

Orpheus
February 19, 2004, 03:16 PM

Shubho
February 19, 2004, 05:05 PM
Another acquired taste: Kakrol. Definitely disgusting.

fab
February 19, 2004, 06:29 PM
how about tripe.. brains.. tongues.. hearts.. livers.. eels.. and fish heads..
:duh:
gross.. i'd have korrolla, kakrol, potol, kochu etc over THOSE any day.

Nasif
February 19, 2004, 07:04 PM
Korolla is one of my fav :)

I can't imagine how people eat tongue or intestines, heart, lungs!!!!

Liver on the other hand tastes yammy :)

Sami
February 19, 2004, 07:08 PM
Originally posted by nasif
I can't imagine how people eat tongue or intestines, heart, lungs!!!!

Liver on the other hand tastes yammy

agreed... :)
Originally posted by Orpheus
good answer

Surprised and appreciated... ;)

[Edited on 20-2-2004 by radicalsami]