Having a solo pint in Guildford after profk not being able to meet up. Proper poor for beer choices. And £5.55 for a pint of Mahou. Luckily i picked up a Buxton In The Zwan and Tegernseer Hells for the train home.
Looking forward to it tbh, mainly as it’s cold and the In The Zwan isn’t. Also it always looks good.
Up there with Augustiner for me
Shit I missed this - there’s literally one called The Junction over the road which is great
Jesus, how long have you got?
(My basic understanding is that large brewers like Carslberg own barley farms and can thus patent the modified strains of barley that they develop, which is maybe gross in a large, “capitalism is a crime, you can’t own nature” kind of way, but I can see it being a legitimate business move. The suit seems to suggest something more sinister though which might just be scaremongering?)
Got dragged to a pretty rubbish bar last night with work bods, but they did have Northern Monk’s Faith on which was really nice.
Also Dark Star’s Lager, which is another decent UK lager.
The crux of this kind of thing is that there are multiple exceptions to what can be patented, in terms of subject matter. One of them is “essentially biological processes”. There is significant case law on what that means, but the tl;dr is that normal cross-breeding of plants is not patentable. This is for purely public policy reasons.
Plant varieties are also not patentable, but because there is a separate intellectual property right that covers them, that I know literally nothing about beyond the fact that it exists. I am not a plant guy.
But the other key thing here is a finicky thing about how patents work. The claims of a patent are what define the claimed scope of protection. Claims can be in several categories, but fundamentally are either to a “product”, i.e. a thing, or to a “process”, i.e. a way of doing a thing. So here, “a barley plant” is a product, “a method of making a modified barley plant” is a process.
Still with me? Good.
What makes it complicated is that the European Patent Office has in the past decided that process claims also cover any product that is directly made by that process. So, by that rule, the “method of making a modified barley plant” also covers the modified barley plant itself.
But didn’t I just say that you’re not allowed to patent plant varieties? Yes. And hence why this is a legal and public policy problem
So I think the concern here is that this artificial, if you like, method of producing modified barley would also cover natural barley variants. I think this concern is misplaced for two reasons.
The first is that if the method claim requires those artificial steps then it does not cover natural variants. The patent holder will argue otherwise, but that’s the law.
The second is that if the method claim does cover natural variants, and those are already known, then the patent is invalid and can’t be enforced. You can’t have it both ways: if the patent covers those things, then it’s also invalidated by the prior existence of those things.
Hope that made sense.
Not seen Faith on tap before but it’s a great ‘core’ beer
I need a drink.
So is this bollocks?
This is my chance to look like a big shot on the internet!
No that’s true. I can patent beer. I cannot patent the barley that went into the beer, if it qualifies as a plant variety.
I have personally done the patenting for a key lime pie that did not contain lime.
This is the beer thread. Eating’s cheating.