The Coronavirus outbreak has changed the face of the world, with multiple countries declaring states of emergency and enforcing self-isolation as they try to contain the pandemic.
With most advice warning against attending large gatherings of people, beer events and hospitality venues are facing considerable challenges, with a number of eagerly anticipated events announcing their postponement.
The Great Australian Beer SpecTAPular has announced new dates for its four festivals in Australia and New Zealand.
GABS Auckland is currently still down to take place on Saturday 4 July in Auckland, with tickets going on sale on 13 May, but GABS will be announcing the best possible dates for it soon.
GABS Melbourne will happen from Friday 7 to Sunday 9 August.
GABS Sydney will be happening on Saturday 29 August.
GABS Brisbane takes place on Saturday 26 September.
Tickets for the Australian festivals are now on sale and all tickets already purchased for the Australian events are automatically valid for the new dates.
“Of course, this is a rapidly evolving situation, and we greatly appreciate the support of all our GABS fans, partners and exhibitors during this period,” a statement from GABS says. “We’ll keep you posted as we go along, and we look forward to seeing you for our tenth year celebrations at GABS 2020. I reckon by then, we’d all enjoy a beer.”
Good Beer Week and Indie Beer Showcase
Good Beer Week (15-24 May) will be postponed until further information is revealed about the crisis. In addition, the Indie Beer Showcase will not take place next week on March 20-21.
Victorian premier Daniel Andrew has declared Victoria to be in a state of emergency and the government has banned non-essential gatherings of over 500 people.
“Today, we’ve come to the very difficult decision that Good Beer Week will be postponed until further information is revealed regarding the current Coronavirus crisis,” Good Beer Week said in a statement.
“Our strong preference is to hold the festival this year, instead of cancelling, however, this decision will be made in light of advice by the Victorian Government. This is to ensure we continue to support the many businesses, breweries, and individuals who have already dedicated so much time to this event and who may suffer in these unprecedented times.”
Good Beer Week has assured the beer community that as soon as the government advises that it is safe to do so, the festival will go ahead.
“While these are unimaginable times, our team will continue to do everything we can to support all those in the community, to limit the spread of COVID-19 and to ensure each other’s safety.
“We’ll continue to stay across the latest advice from the Victorian State Government and Federal Government and will communicate any updates and changes once we know more.”
Canberra Craft Beer and Cider Festival
Canberra Craft Beer & Cider Festival (21 March) has also been cancelled after recommendation by Australia’s chief medical officer Bredan Murphy.
“The recommendation has been endorsed by the Prime Minister and all State and Territory governments,” the festival said in a statement.
“All current ticket holders will be automatically given a full refund by Moshtix. While there are no plans to reschedule in 2020, the Festival will be held once again next year on 20th March, 2021.”
“The organisers of the Festival (Schwartz Family Co) are planning to have their inaugural beer & cider festival on the Gold Coast on Saturday October 24th. Further details will be announced shortly.”
High Country Hops Festival cancelled
The High Country Hops Festival 2020 has also been cancelled.
Bridge Road Brewers, who organises the event, has stated on Facebook that it is working towards a replacement festival event later on in 2020 and that all pre-purhcased passes will be refunded as soon as possible. The brewery and venue at present remain open for business.
“We thank all vendors, artists, customers and guests for their support and understanding,” Bridge Road Brewers said on its Facebook page.
“We ask that everyone continues to be safe, empathetic and mindful in their actions and wish you, your families and communities all the best in these chaotic times. Take care.”
ANHC 2020 cancelled
The executive board of the Australian National Homebrewing Conference (ANHC) 2020 has been cancelled following the prime minister’s announcement curtailing all non-essential indoor gatherings of over 100 persons.
The event will be postponed until October 2021.
“Our principal thought is for our patrons who have supported us through the last 12 years,” the ANHC said in a statement. “We can’t thank you enough for your support and, rest assured, we’ll be back for 2021.
“A secondary consideration is for our international guests currently facing extreme uncertainty regarding their international travel. While we’ve lined up a strong team of local presenters, our international brewing stars are at the heart of ANHC and we feel it would be very disappointing if folks were not able to travel safely in October, if at all.”
BeerFest Perth moved to October
BeerFest has made the decision to postpone Perth BeerFest inline with recommendations from the Australian government.
The festival will now run from 2-3 October 2020.
“We’re gutted that we won’t be finishing our national tour in Perth at the end of the month, however, the health and wellbeing of all people involved in the event is, and always has been, our top priority, thus by implementing the social distancing approach, we hope that this can help mitigate the impact of the virus,” says Beerfest founder and organiser James Harding.
AusCider 2020, which was scheduled to be held in the Perth Hill from 3-6 June, has been postponed.
The organisers are looking to hold the event later in the year and will announce new dates as soon as they are able.
Tickets will be refunded in full or honoured at the rescheduled conference.
AIBAs judging postponed
Judging of the 2020 Australian International Beer Awards (AIBA) has been postponed.
The AIBA was scheduled to commence judging at Melbourne Showgrounds on Wednesday 13 May, concluding Friday 15 May.
The beers will now be judged at a later date.
Online entries will remain open beyond the original closing date of Friday 27 March. Exhibitors will be advised of a new closing date for entrieswhen the revised judging dates are finalised.
We will update this page as more news comes in about festivals and events. To let us know about a cancelled or postponed event, please contact us at [email protected].