By James Atkinson

Greens leader and craft brewing advocate Christine Milne, as well as Little Creatures founder Howard Cearns, are among the latest additions to the speaker line-up for this month's Beer & Brewer conference.

Milne, a documented beer lover and staunch supporter of excise reform for craft brewers, will provide the opening address at the conference, which kicks off at 8:45am on Thursday May 17 at BMW Edge, Federation Square, Melbourne.

Milne and Cearns are to be joined by presenters Brendan Varis of Feral Brewing, Australia's top craft brewer and Beer & Brewer's Brewer of the Year 2011, and Brian Watson, who has been responsible for developing over 50 beers and breweries around the world.

Designed to fit in with a trip to the AIBA awards, the conference will be strongly focused on helping the beer retailers and publicans stay up to date with new developments, according to organiser David Lipman.

"Retailers need to ensure they are stocking the beers and ciders in demand from the 2000+ options on the market, and their staff need to be well armed with the knowledge and confidence to sell these products," he said.

Brian Fitzgerald, a qualified Cicerone (beer sommelier) and ALH's Ian Kingham will share their experiences and knowledge on building a beer list. 

Accredited trainers from the Institute of Brewing and Distilling IBD – including Hugh Dunn from ECU, Peter Aldred from the Uni of Ballarat, Mike Spencer from Brewtique and Simon Brooke-Taylor from NNL Brewery Services – will be presenting on the topics of beer styles and taste training.

Click here for more information on the full schedule, speaker profiles and exhibitors.

Click here to book in as a delegate.

The Shout Team

The leading online news service for Australia's beer, wine, spirits and hospitality industries.

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