Velkopopovický Kozel is a Czech lager produced since 1874. In that year, Franz Ringhoffer founded a brewery in Velké Popovice, a town 25km southeast of Prague. Their symbol is a goat ("Kozel" means "goat" in Czech).
The first historical mention of the brewery dates back to the 14th century. The brewery in Velke Popovice, as we know it today, has its origins in the 19th century. After years of disagreements and the gradual decline of the brewery, it was bought by a rich industrial tycoon, Frantisek Ringhoffer, who was the Mayor of Smíchov and one of the most successful entrepreneurs in Czechoslovak history.
The brewery was built in 1875, and the first batch of Kozel beer was brewed in the same year. The brewery, thanks to its owner, introduced new technologies, giving rise to its modern history. At the turn of the 20th century the brewery passed through its second major reconstruction and its production capacity was increased to 90,000 hectoliters per year from the original 18,000 in the beginning.
In 2002, Kozel merged with the brewery the Pilsner Urquell and Radegast by brewery conglomerate SABMiller.