Friday, 25 January 2013

Decline accelerates

Three months ago I wrote a post called Steady Decline Continues, saying that the most recent BBPA Beer Barometer figures weren’t actually all that bad, considering. However, following a sharp downturn in the final quarter of 2012, the latest ones, released today, are markedly worse.

On an annualised basis, the overall beer market is down by 4.7% on 2011, with the pain shared equally between on- and off-trades. The on-trade is now 25% down on five years ago, and an annual 4.7% fall will halve the total in 14 years. Indeed, the past 14 years have seen a 45% drop. It’s no longer a switch from one to the other, it’s a decline right across the board, so the argument that “supermarkets are killing pubs” looks very threadbare.

The beer duty escalator must bear a substantial share of the blame for this. I certainly get the impression there has been a significant fattening of margins on undiscounted products in the off-trade, with a humble four-pack of Carling now often costing well north of £4, and the £3+ pint of cooking bitter has become commonplace in pubs. On the other hand, the anti-drink lobby will look at the figures and say “good result – keep with it”.

2 comments:

  1. Do we know the breakdown into micro/regional/MNC, UK/foreign brewed, ale/lager and cask/keg etc?
    That might give us a better indication as to what is going on.

    ReplyDelete
  2. A fantastic success for the campaign to turn beer & pubs into a cottage industry meeting the pretentions of middle class guardian readers and stop poor people from drinking that industrially produced macro filth they insist on. Hurrah.

    ReplyDelete



All comments currently require prior approval by the blog owner. See here for details of my comment policy.

Please register an account to comment. To combat trolling, if you want to make more than the occasional unregistered comment, it would be appreciated if you could let me know something about yourself.