The IBD was originally formed as The Laboratory Club in 1886; a time when the world of brewing and distilling was very different.
There were nearly 20,000 licensed breweries in the UK with the two largest being Arthur Guiness in Dublin and William Bass in Burton-on-Trent. Dark, porter style beers had been the most popular for decades but were beginning to be superseded by lighter, Pale ales from Burton which were easier to drink and quicker to produce – Brettanomyces fermentations were being overtaken by Saccharomyces Cervisae. Beer quality was often poor, with tonics and remedies being sold to counter-act the side-effects of impurities which included high levels of arsenic.
In Distilling, Coffey Stills were being used to produce high quantities of gin and whisky for the few distilleries who had them installed. However, the majority of distilleries still used pot stills. Usher and Dewar had introduced blended whiskies, increasing the reach and popularity of this drink.
Technology wise, external mash mixers were finding their way into the industry as did sparging and the use of cast iron vessels in the brewhouse instead of wood. Wooden fermenters were beginning to be lined with copper to improve sanitation. Bottling was still done by hand and with no method of forced carbonating, all beers were secondary fermented in the serving vessel.
Science was just beginning to be accepted in the industry, which had long run on the principles of “we’ve always done it this way”. With many chemists being employed in a consulting role, there was friction between them and the brewers who claimed they lacked practical knowledge.
Pasteur had published “Etudes de la Biere” in 1876 and further works by the likes of Hansen, Lintner, Siebel and Tabberer Brown were making their way around the industry.
From this background, a group of talented scientific researchers in the fields of biology and chemistry, led by Edward Moritz, agreed to meet and discuss scientific issues relating to malting and brewing, forming The Laboratory Club in 1886. It met in rooms on Fitzroy Square in London and began publishing the “Transactions of the Laboratory Club” the next year.
The Laboratory Club was formed
The Transactions of the Laboratory Club are first published
The Laboratory Club changed its name to “The Institute of Brewing” on November 13th.
Gained members from South Africa and New Zealand
First member from a distillery. The North of England Institute of Brewing was formed.
The Yorkshire Institute of Brewing was formed.
The Institute had grown to 414 members, including its first American. The Midland Institute of Brewing was formed.
The four Institutes were federated and the first “Journal of the Federated Institutes of Brewing” was published. The Institute’s first staff member was employed as an editor for the journal.
The Institute of Brewing found its first permanent home – two rooms of the Hall of The Brewers Company, allowing it to establish a library/reading room and an office. The Yorkshire Institute became the first Section of the London Institute.
All four institutes were amalgamated into one, with a Scottish Section added. The Institute now had over 1000 members and hosted Lord Kelvin as the guest of honour at the annual banquet.
Malt Analysis Committee publishes first standard methods
The Operative Brewer’s Guild (a separate organisation) opens in Yorkshire. Its aims are the provision of financial help for redundant brewers, the establishment of a benevolent fund and the provision of a list of vacancies and those seeking employment.
Institute membership declining, poor finances
Two new types of membership available: Diploma (requiring 6 years experience & an exam) and Associate (2 years experience & exam). First “Index of the Journal of the Institute of Brewing” spanning 1887 to 1910 published.
Membership increased by 200
Authors paid for Journal papers.
1247 members (748 Diploma)
Burton-on-Trent Section opens
Journal opens up to more practical, as opposed to purely scientific papers
Journal opens up to more practical papers as opposed to purely scientific
Methods of Analysis update to include SO2 after government limit imposed
Guild has 743 members
First female member of the Institute
“Standard Methods of Malt Analysis for Commercial Purposes” published
International members now include Australia (21), USA (16), Europe (15), South Africa (14), Canada (9), New Zealand (8), India (8), “Other” (4)
Coat of Arms awarded
IoB offices and library destroyed in air raid (which also destroyed one third of the year’s hop harvest, stored in a single warehouse)
First diet of examinations
Examinations undertaken from POW camps
John S Ford Award begins
IoB becomes the UK’s representative at the new European Brewers Congress
IoB opens the Brewing Industry Research Foundation in Lyfell Hall, Surrey, with 80 staff
IoB offices move to 33 Clarges Street, Piccadilly
First international section opens in Australia
“Recommended Methods of Hops Analysis” published
First JIB paper on Whisky
Life membership offered for those who have been members for over 50 years
Williams Waters Butler Awards begins. IoB has 3365 members
Central and Southern African section opens
IoB is part of a new online Brew-Info database containing over 30,000 articles on brewing science
IoB begins to issue Ferment magazine, containing committee and section reports, upcoming events, education and training information and raw material and technological innovation reports
First ballot on combining the Institute and the Guild fails to achieve a majority by 0.4%
IoB starts to offer CPD (Continuous Professional Development) points for attendance at events, symposia and lectures
Australia and New Zealand Section becomes Asia Pacific Section
36 worldwide examination centres established
IoB’s first distilling qualifications offered. 33 Clarges Street is connected to the internet. 41% of members now from outside of the UK. Central and Southern Africa section becomes Africa section
IoB offers distance learning courses in response to changing work patterns
Foundation in Brewing course launched for new starters in the industry
IoB has > 1000 examination candidates sitting examinations at 75 centres worldwide
Institute of Brewers and International Brewers Guild amalgamate to form the Institute and Guild of Brewing
Institute and Guild of Brewing becomes the Institute of Brewing and Distilling
The IBD purchases The Beer Academy
Over 2000 students take IBD exams
IBD moves to new offices at 44A Curlew Street, London
Over 3000 students take IBD exams
Jerry Avis becomes CEO of the IBD
The Beer Academy becomes The Beer and Cider Academy. First Master Distiller exams undertaken.
The IBD begins offering courses through an online learning environment
IBD launches a major update to its website and database systems
Want to find out more about the IBD's history? After all, our history is the history of Brewing and Distilling.
Visit our Online Shop to purchase "Brewers and Distillers by Profession" by Raymond Gale Anderson, a fully researched, in-depth history of the organisation available in paper back or hardback formats.