Trouble Brewing

The Manchurian beer war took shape 104 years ago when a Russian man founded China's first beer factory just south of the Siberian border and named it after himself—Ulubulevskij Brewery. Japanese managers took over after Emperor Hirohito's forces conquered Manchuria, as that part of northeast China was known, and the company later fell into the hands of the Soviet Red Army. Only in the 1950s, after Stalin ordered the return of Chinese assets, did managers from the mainland take control; in the famine years that followed, they brewed the first Chinese beer from corn. These days the Harbin Brewery Group is...

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