Copyright: © Enactus Aachen

Studies show that around 21 kilograms of bread per person are thrown away in Germany every year. If some of it can be reused, that's good. If it can also be used to make beer, that's even better. "We receive unsaleable goods from bakeries and use them to replace around a quarter of the malt needed in the brewing process," says Paul Rossbach, explaining the idea behind producing the company's own beer under the name Keäksack. "We want to save leftover bread from going into the trash can and thus promote awareness of community thinking and action." Incidentally, Keäksack is Aachen dialect for "shouter," and the motto of the project is "Join us in shouting about making the world a little better!"

Paul is studying industrial engineering at RWTH Aachen University and is involved in the student initiative Enactus Aachen - he has been leading the beer project together with Lucas Oppen since the beginning of 2022. "In the beginning, we tried out a lot and turned various kitchens in shared apartments into breweries," the 24-year-old recalls. "Luckily, we got good tips from the Aachen brewing community." When the team agreed that they had found a good recipe, they had a Cologne-based contract brewer make a larger batch. "Unfortunately, a foreign yeast got into the beer during bottling and soured the entire 250 liters. That was a major setback." Nevertheless, Lucas and Paul didn't give up and had a local brewer produce 80 liters using a refined recipe. This was successful: "The beer was so delicious that it was included in the range of an Aachen craft beer store," says Paul. "After a few weeks, Keäksack was sold out there." Currently, a new production of 1,250 liters is in the works - also to serve the sales of the AStA beer garden BierTemp on Platanenplatz (by the way, today from 6 pm ).

But Keäksack also has a social component: 30 cents of every liter goes to the Aachener Tafel food bank. "For us, this closes the circle," Paul explains. "The stale bread gets a second chance and thus feeds people who lack the most basic necessities."