The launch follows the world’s first commercially-made cassava beer, Impala, which SABMiller launched in Mozambique 18 months ago. Cassava is a large root crop.
According to the brewer, cassava had never been used to brew beer on a commercial scale prior to the launch of Impala, because of the logistical challenge of collecting the roots from smallholder farmers who are widely dispersed, along with its rapid deterioration immediately after harvesting.
Accra Brewery makes use of a mobile processing unit that travels to the cassava growing regions and processes the root in situ, preserving the integrity of the starch.
Mark Bowman, managing director of SABMiller Africa, said: “Part of our strategy across Africa is to make high quality beer which is affordable for low-income consumers while simultaneously creating opportunities for smallholder farmers in our markets. The launch of Eagle in Ghana ticks both these boxes.
“Eagle is aimed at attracting low-income consumers away from illicit alcohol. This is a virtuous circle: smallholder cassava farmers have a guaranteed market for their crop, which is then used to make consistently high quality, affordable beer for consumers; and the government realises increased revenues as people trade up into formal, taxable alcohol consumption.”
Eagle will be sold in 375ml bottles at a price point equal to 70% of mainstream lager. This is made possible by a reduced excise rate agreed with the Ghanaian government in recognition of the use of locally-sourced commodities and the long-term contribution that Eagle is expected to make to agricultural and economic development in the country.