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Contrary to a popular belief, some scientists claim beer and not bread is the reason that drove man to settle down and start a farm around 10,000 years ago.
Patrick McGovern from the University of Pennsylvania says beer had a number of advantages beyond the intoxicating effects and taste, such as a high B vitamin content and was safer to drink than water as the brewing process killed off bacteria and viruses.
The theory of the importance of beer was first sparked by Middle Eastern pre-history scholar Robert Braidwood at the University of Chicago in the 1950s.
McGovern’s theory has been backed by Solomon Katz, an anthropology professor at the University of Pennsylvania, who claims there is little evidence of the popularity of bread.
In a region of southwest Iran, analysis of plant remains found just 3.4 per cent of them were domesticated cereals. Katz argued they were farming and storing the grain to make beer.
It is believed man first learned to make a basic gruel from barley, and then natural yeast, perhaps supplied by insects, would have fermented the gruel, and created a basic type of beer.
Back to the present, beer acts as an important catalyst for people to act as a community and is used in ceremonies and celebrations.
So guzzle the drink and cheers!