The world's largest beer festival “Octoberfest (October Festival)” has started on October 21 in Munich, Southern Germany, until October 6. Due to the growing debate on climate change, the “environmentally friendly festival” is being promoted through the use of renewable energy.
The main venue is 14 huge tents built on 42 hectares. At noon, the Mayor of Dieter Reiter in Munich opened the first barrel and declared the opening, and many people dressed in national costumes drank beer in a 1-liter mug called “Mus” one after another. Approximately 6 million people from around the world are expected during the period.
During the period, energy use and carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions will also increase. Therefore, according to the organizers, they are working to offset CO2 emissions through investments in global forest conservation projects. In addition to using electricity derived from natural energy, the venue uses reusable tableware and mugs, and the volume of trash has decreased to about one-third in the past decade. The water used to wash beer mugs is also saved for washing toilets.
At Oktoberfest it is common to taste beer while eating grilled chicken and sausages. Recently, however, an increasing number of dishes are being made for “vegans” that avoid animal foods, including eggs and dairy products.
“I'm glad there are more dishes to enjoy in vegan, reflecting the trend of Germany as a whole,” says Sicilian Thun (33), who lives in Oktoberfest every year. In southern Germany, food called “liver casee”, which is made by mixing spices with ground meat and baked, is preferred, but Sicilian was eating liver casee derived from soybeans. “There is also a flavor and very delicious,” he said.
The price of beer at the venue is increasing year by year, reflecting the cost of increasing organic food and introducing natural energy. This year, it is 10.8 to 11.8 euros (about 1270 to 1390 yen), about 3% higher than last year. (Munich = Nojima)