12 March 2008: Red Beer

If you don't fancy the green beer we highlighted last Friday, how about red beer instead?

The communist state of North Korea, best known for its poverty, propaganda and nuclear sabre rattling, has developed one of the highest-quality beers in the region.

Early this decade the country bought the brewing plant from a disused brewery in Wiltshire, dismantled it, shipped it to North Korea and reassembled it. After a little fine tuning the new beer, described as a full-bodied lager a little on the sweet side, went on sale and is said by foreigners who have tried it to be infinitely superior to the mass-marketed beers available in South Korea.

Better still, a 640 ml bottle of sells for about 35 pence.

But do not expect to see North Korean beer invading overseas markets any time soon. North Korea says it simply doesn't have the infrastructure to package and ship the beer for export.

SaintFM wonders why it is that North Korea can work out how to make nuclear weapons but can't manage to export beer.