This year’s Australian International Beer Awards are set to be the biggest yet, with more than 2,600 entries expected.
Assessing these entries will be a judging panel of 75 of the best brewers, journalists and experts from across Australia and the world.
Organisers from The Royal Agricultural Society of Victoria (RASV) say the competition is “constantly evolving” to stay at the forefront of the global brewing industry.
As the largest annual beer competition in the world, the RASV are mixing it up this year including introducing a technologically-focused judging process, new IPA categories after receiving 400 entries for the category last year, and putting the spotlight on Victorian brewers with a special new award.
“The global beer industry has exploded with brewers branching out into more and more creative styles of beer,” said Kirsten Stubbings, Competition Manager.
“The RASV is constantly updating the awards to reflect the ever-changing nature of the industry and ensure the classes and trophies are an accurate representation of the beers being brewed today.”
What’s new in the AIBA?
- Digital judging: A digital judging system is being implemented this year which the RASV says will ensure exhibitors receive more comprehensive feedback on their brews than ever.
- IPAs: After growing the category year-on-year, to the point where they received 400 entries for the award last year, the RASV has split the category into two, including the Best Traditional IPA and the Best Modern IPA trophies, to recognise the now-prolific style in all its forms.
- Specialty Beer: The Speciality Beer category will be split this year into two trophies – Best Speciality Beer and Best Speciality Flavoured Beer.
- Victorian brewers: One deserving brewery will take home the inaugural Champion Victorian Brewery trophy, presented by the Premier of Victoria. Last year, 71 out of 402 exhibitors were Victorian brewers, and even though it is an international competition, organisers were keen to highlight the successes of their home region.
“This trophy recognises the dedication of the Victorian Brewers, whose support makes the AIBA possible, and celebrates the fantastic quality of beers they produce,” said Stubbings.
Why should you enter?
“The AIBA seal of excellence is a recognised benchmark of quality and trophy and medal wins are a great way to get ahead in the market and grow your business… and to understand where your beers sit in terms of style and quality on an international scale,” said the RASV.
Exhibitors also receive feedback from the judges and graphs to display where their scores compare to the rest of the category entrants, and winners receive a marketing and promotional toolkit.
In addition, there are networking opportunities to meet brewers from across the world, including joining the 800 industry professionals at the AIBA presentation event.
The 28th AIBA will be judged over three days from Wednesday 13 to Friday 15 May, at Melbourne Showgrounds.
The AIBA presentation event will be held at in the new Victoria Pavilion at Melbourne Showgrounds where 34 trophies will be presented including 11 champion trophies, culminating in the Champion Australian and Champion International Beer awards.
The AIBA is open for entry until Friday 27 March – for all details on how to enter head to rasv.com.au/beer.
Entries Open: Tuesday 4 February
Entries Close: Friday 27 March
Deliveries to Hellmann: Monday 13 April – Friday 1 May
Melbourne Metro Deliveries to RASV: Wednesday 6 – Friday 8 May
Judging: Wednesday 13 – Friday 15 May
Awards Presentation: Thursday 21 May
Exhibitor and Trade Tasting: Friday 22 May