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German Beer Industry Sees Recovery

Germany's beer industry is pulling out of its recent nosedive thanks mainly to the unseasonably hot summer that swept across most of Europe this year, according to a government report. Figures released on Thursday by the German government show consumption leveling off in the third quarter of 2003. During the hottest spell in living memory, the peak of the summer period between July-September, Germans drank 2.96 billion liters of beer, a figure unchanged from the same period last year, according to the Federal Statistics Office. The Germans had surprised many experts in recent years by staying away from their national brew, which was attributed to increasing health awareness and the sluggish economy as well as the introduction in 2003 of an unpopular system of deposits on cans and bottles.