Trade association makes case for cutting Beer Duty, Business Rates and VAT so sector can lead levelling up agenda The British Beer & Pub Association (BBPA) has today met with HM Treasury officials to make representations for the brewing and pub sector ahead of the Budget on October 27th. In its meeting with HM Treasury, the BBPA highlighted the vital role pubs and brewing play in supporting over 900,000 jobs in communities across the UK and contributing £26 billion to the UK economy across towns, villages and cities. It made the case that if the Government is serious about Building Back Better and Levelling up, it must invest in pubs and brewers who have a leading role to play in the recovery as they come through the pandemic and continue their world-leading status. To achieve this, the BBPA underlined in the meeting the importance of co-investment from Government in the sector in the form of a fairer tax burden and more level playing field with other European nations post-Brexit. It made the case for its three key Budget asks: cutting beer duty overall, extending business rates relief and permanently lowering VAT for all food and drink sold in pubs. In concluding the meeting, it emphasised with HM Treasury officials that investment from the Government will enable the beer and pub sector to drive a jobs-rich recovery, whilst ensuring a pint in a pub remains an affordable pleasure. Emma McClarkin, Chief Executive of the British Beer & Pub Association, said: “As we count down the days to the Budget, it was very productive holding a meeting with HM Treasury to further make the case for investment in our sector in the form of fairer taxation. “Investing in our brewers and pubs is investing in our communities and society to build back better. In return we will create jobs, boost the local economy and help our communities reconnect and unite again. “If the Government is serious about levelling up, it must get serious about reducing the tax burdens on our sector.”
BBPA reveals winners of dinner awards and money fundraised for charity Ralph Findlay, former CEO of Marston’s PLC – and Paul Scully MP, Secretary of State for Small Business – have been revealed as winners of awards at the BBPA’s Annual Dinner 2021. The dinner took place at the Leonardo Royal Hotel Tower Bridge in London on Wednesday 13th. Over 300 guests from across the beer and pub sector, media and politics attended the event – the first event for the sector to come together once more following the pandemic. Ralph Findlay won the BBPA’s Chairman’s Award in recognition of his service to the beer and pub sector after 20 years in charge of Marston’s PLC, which he stepped down from earlier this month. Paul Scully won the Beer and Pub Champion Award in recognition of his support and advocacy for helping the brewing and pub sector during the height of the pandemic as Secretary of State for Small Business. At the event, over £7,000 was raised for the Pedalling for Pubs, a charity bike ride that will see members of the sector ride 300km across Jordan in aid of pubs, breweries and the wider hospitality industry in the UK. The money raised will be channelled into projects that support those in need via The Licensed Trade Charity and Only a Pavement Away. To find out more about the charity bike ride and to donate, visit www.pedallingforpubs.org.uk/. Emma McClarkin, Chief Executive of the British Beer & Pub Association, said: “After 20 years at the helm of Marston’s, it is fantastic to see Ralph Findlay win the Chairman’s Award. As both a long standing board member of the BBPA and champion for our sector the award is thoroughly deserved! “As a true supporter of our sector, it is great to thank Paul Scully MP with our Beer and Pub Champion Award. His support during the lockdowns through to now as our sector begins its recovery has been critical. “This Annual Dinner was particularly special given it followed the lockdowns. It was wonderful to see everyone properly again. More importantly, we managed to raise over £7,000 for our charity partners the Licensed Trade Charity and Only a Pavement Away!”
BBPA highlights accelerated plight of cask ale since COVID and urges rallying call to support uniquely British beer for Cask Ale Week The British Beer & Pub Association (BBPA), the leading trade association representing brewers and pubs, has today revealed that sales of cask beer in pubs are down 40% since pubs reopened in April 2021 – a total of 76 million pints. From April 2021 to July 2021, the latest sales data the BBPA has, 113 million pints of cask beer were sold in pubs. During the same period in 2019 and before the pandemic, 189 million pints were sold. It means a loss in revenue to pubs and brewers from cask beer of £243 million in the last four months alone due to the plight of cask, accelerated by the pandemic. Before the pandemic, sales of cask ale had already been declining. From 2014 – 2019, sales fell by 17%. From 2009 to 2014, sales of cask decreased by just 0.8%. However, the decrease in sales of cask beer by 40% since April 2021 is by far the biggest decline for the category on record and indicates an accelerated decline in its plight through COVID and beyond. Cask ale is without doubt key to British brewing. It is a form of brewing unique to the UK and has a rich history dating back to the Middle Ages. It is an unfiltered, unpasteurised ‘live’ product containing yeast that is served from a cask container where it’s gently matured by secondary fermentation. When conditioned and managed correctly, the yeast in the cask settles to the bottom, leaving a clear, often bright, full-flavoured and naturally carbonated beer to be served from a handpump. Because it is a live product, conditioned in a cask, cask ale – also known as ‘real ale’ – can only be purchased and consumed at a pub. This means cask ale plays a vital role in the wellbeing and viability of pubs, supporting the communities they serve. However Given the inextricable link between cask ale and pubs, the plight of cask ale is a real concern for the nations locals and beer drinkers. It has been driven by pubs looking to stock less cask ale because of uncertainty around trading and restrictions. Likewise, it has been driven by restrictions impacting the spontaneity of being able to visit a pub for a quick pint – the core cask ale drinker occasion. The BBPA is therefore highlighting the plight of cask ale and urging people to support it by getting behind Cask Ale Week. Cask Ale Week runs from 23rd September to 3rd October 2021. It is all about raising the profile of cask beer in the UK and getting beer drinkers to visit their local to try a pint of cask ale in order to grow the category once more. It is run by Cask Marque, the accreditation scheme for pubs who serve the highest quality cask beer. Emma McClarkin, Chief Executive of the British Beer & Pub Association said: “The plight of cask beer is a huge concern for our sector. Pubs are the home of cask beer so if sales of it are declining then it means the viability of our pubs are reducing too. “We all missed a proper pint of cask ale in the pub during lockdowns. We cannot take cask beer for granted anymore. With the sector reopen once more, it is vital we promote our pubs and the range they have on cask which they so expertly keep and serve. Doing so will help our brewers and pubs in their recovery and ensure this uniquely British style of beer can recover to the glory it deserves. “The BBPA is fully behind Cask Ale Week and we urge every local, brewery and pub goer to support it!” Kevin Georgel, Chief Executive of St Austell Brewery, which brews cask ale brands including Tribute and Proper Job, said: “Not only did the pandemic force our Great British pubs to shut, but it stopped us from being able to serve and enjoy cask beer. The impact of this has seen an accelerated decline of this quintessential British beer. “The uncertainty of covid, lockdowns and restrictions has meant less pubs serving cask because it is a live product and has shorter shelf life. Likewise, it has meant the spontaneity of going to the pub for a pint – the core cask ale drinker occasion – has diminished. “There has never been a better time for pub goers to support their local, by choosing to drink fresh cask beer, that’s been expertly brewed, stored and poured.”
We champion issues that matter to the beer and pub industry. These are causes our members are passionate about; whether it’s promoting beer as the nation’s drink, or campaigning against increases to beer duty and businesses rates that are so damaging to community pubs.