Friday 30 January 2015

Happy days are here again!

The latest British Beer Barometer statistics from the BBPA show that, in 2014, overall UK beer sales rose by 1.3% over the previous year, the first time this has happened for ten years. It also represents a landmark in that the tipping point between on- and off-trade seems to have been finally reached, with the off-trade accounting for 50.2% of sales in the full year and 52.5% in the final quarter. Having said that, the on-trade only fell by 0.8%, a rate of decline that newspaper publishers would kill for. They also make a good point that seven out of ten drinks sold in pubs are beer.

This rise results from a combination of economic recovery and two years with no increase in beer duty. If the duty escalator had still been in force, then a pint in the pub would now be 20-30p dearer and the figures would look much less healthy. No doubt the anti-drink lobby will be spluttering into their sarsaparilla, so watch out for them stepping up calls for further punitive duty increases.


  1. The beards like to account for the decline of the on trade as a result of the availability of cheap beer in Tesco.

    You accept in some way it is also a result of the decline of the appeal of the pub, specifically the freedom to enjoy a beer and a fag together.

    Could the lack of appeal of the pub also be related to the CAMRAification of the pub? Lots of obscure pongy ale and beardy beer snobs? Middle class types gentrifying pubs and turning sinking a few easy going ones into an act of discerning sophistication?

    If you are among the 90% and like a cold crisp pint of fizzy loveliness aren't you better off avoiding pubs and the types that frequent them?

  2. Seriously, I doubt whether many pubs have closed because of beer geeks putting normal people off.


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