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«Miller Brands Ukraine» trained the second group of beer tasters (Translation)

8 November 2011

In the end of October 2011, the second group of «Miller Brands Ukraine» beer tasters selected from the company staff completed their training. New specialists will join the group of qualified tasters who studied the same course last year.

The candidates for the second group of «Miller Brands Ukraine» beer tasters were selected in late 2010. Any employee at the company, regardless of their position and track record, was allowed to participate in the competition.

Arina Alferova, «Miller Brands Ukraine» testing specialist: "The most important condition for becoming a taster is a natural ability to taste and smell. The training merely develops these qualities. Statistically, only 15% of people are natural born tasters. It also helps a lot if a taster is also familiar with the beer making process. Then they will only have to develop their abilities and learn specific testing notions."

The main training course for «Miller Brands Ukraine» tasters lasts nine months and consists of three stages. After each stage, students are tested to see if they were able to gain the necessary knowledge and skills. Only the candidates who passed the test move on to the next level. For example, the present group initially consisted of 20 people, but only 6 specialists successfully made it through all the stages.

At the first (initial) stage, the future tasters learn to distinguish 4 primary tastes: sour, sweet, bitter and salty.

Second (basic) stage is meant to develop olfactory receptors. Those who pass this test learned to unmistakably identify 10 different fragrances.

After the third (advanced) level, the tasters should know the taste and fragrance of 38 types of beer. However, the full assortment of beer tastes and fragrances that «Miller Brands Ukraine» tasters become acquainted with totals 57. This is the SABMiller standard, and professional tasters from the international tasting panel use the same standard. After passing the third test, the students become qualified tasters.

The training is not yet over after the main level. Tasters continue to refine their skills at weekly classes and every two months they have to pass a so-called "validation." Validation is a test for the most experienced tasters, and it helps determine their professional rating, not only in «Miller Brands Ukraine» but in SABMiller as a whole. Those who successfully pass the validation become validated tasters. Validated tasters get access to SABMiller's European tasting panel. They work there as trainees and later become SABMiller tasters. That is the highest level in the career of an organoleptic analysis specialist.

At «Miller Brands Ukraine», tasting is as important for product quality evaluation as physical, chemical and microbiological analysis at every stage of the beer making process. After bottling, each beer batch is checked by the taste panel in order to confirm compliance with the standard for each type and brand of beer. Besides taste and fragrance, tasters also check the appearance of the product, i.e. its clarity, colour, foam. Each tasting is "blind," so the experts don't know what kind of beer they're tasting.


Contact details
Valentin Boinitsky
Head of Corporate Affairs, Miller Brands Ukraine, a subsidiary of SABMiller plc
tel. +380 (44) 393 2676 ext. 6732, mob. +380 (50) 312 0244,

About SABMiller plc
SABMiller plc is one of the world's largest brewers, with brewing interests and distribution agreements across six continents. The group's wide portfolio of brands includes premium international beers such as Pilsner Urquell, Peroni Nastro Azzurro, Miller Genuine Draft and Grolsch, as well as leading local brands such as Aguila, Castle, Miller Lite, Snow and Tyskie.  SABMiller is also one of the world's largest bottlers of Coca-Cola products.

About Miller Brands Ukraine
PJSC Miller Brands Ukraine is a subsidiary of SABMiller plc. In July 2008, SABMiller plc acquired 99.84% of JSC Sarmat. At the end of 2010, the company changed the name from JSC Sarmat to PJSC Miller Brands Ukraine. The brand portfolio of Miller Brands Ukraine includes local brands like Sarmat and Zhygulivske, as well as well-known international brands: Miller Genuine Draft (imported), Zolotaya Bochka (Russian premium brand, produced in Ukraine under licence), Velkopopovicky Kozel (Czech premium brand, produced in Ukraine under licence) and Amsterdam Mariner (Dutch brand, produced in Ukraine under licence).

This SABMiller subsidiary news release has been translated from its local market language to English language for publication on We have attempted to provide an accurate translation of the original material but due to the difficulties of translation slight differences may exist.

Note, the news release was first published in its local market on [07/11/2011].

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