From beer to biofuel at Forfar Probus Club


Vice-President Jim Ewing welcomed over 40 members of Forfar Probus Club to their latest meeting and introduced guest speaker Professor Graeme Walker of Abertay University.

Professor Walker give an illustrated talk entitled “Alcohol: From Beer to Biofuel”, starting with a brief history of alcohol through the ages, beer having been brewed in Sumeria, Egypt, as early as 7000 BC.

He then gave an explanation of the process involved in beer and wine making along with a map of the world showing the distilled spirits relating to each country, Vodka being the number one in the league table with Scotch Whisky being placed fourth. He explained that Scottish Distilleries are booming due to great demand from China, India and Russia.

Regarding biofuel, he explained that this is not a new idea as Henry Ford designed his model T Ford motor car (1908 - 1927) to run on bioethanol which was derived by distilling liquid from maize, widely grown in America.

Today, a variety of materials can be converted to give biofuel and most petrol already contains about 5% alcohol with an aim that 20% of petrol will contain 20% alcohol by the year 2020.

Club member George Richardson proposed the vote of thanks.

Pictured after the talk are (from left) George Richardson, Prof. Graeme Walker, David Callender and vice-president Jim Ewing.