The “ridiculous waste” of Christmas beer was the subject of discussion at Alþingi, the Icelandic parliament, today, mbl.is reports. Member of Parliament Brynhildur Pétursdóttir, Bright Future, used those words when deploring the fact that regulations require for perfectly good, unsold beer to be discarded right after Christmas or Easter if it’s labeled as Christmas beer or Easter beer. The regulations originate in the Ministry of Finance. Thus, she asked Finance Minister Bjarni Benediktsson whether those could be changed.
Bjarni responded, “Of course these are rules which should be reevaluated, as are rules regarding where liquor can be sold. And it’s true that there is much waste involved when a perfectly good product is discarded because its labeling doesn’t correspond with the calendar. Of course that’s waste; that’s true.”
“This is a major issue,” Brynhildur said, “Food waste is a serious matter. It’s said that a third of food produced in the world ends as waste, one way or another, from the field until you’ve made the beer and discarded it. We should react wherever we can to reduce food waste.”
Bjarni agreed, “This is a great example,” he said “of how far people have gone in micromanaging society.”
On January 6, the last day of Christmas in Iceland, 33,000 liters (8,718 gallons) of Christmas beer remained unsold and doomed to be wasted.