Cask Marque asks for pubco support to boost ale in new initiative

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Pub companies and brewers are being asked to lend their support to the Cask Marque scheme, promoting quality real ale, as it launches its latest...

Pub companies and brewers are being asked to lend their support to the Cask Marque scheme, promoting quality real ale, as it launches its latest initiative.

While the scheme already has support from companies including London-based brewer Fuller's, Suffolk's Greene King and pub operator JD Wetherspoon, it is now hoped that other operators will sign up.

The latest initiative aims to encourage pub-goers to experiment with real ale through two new consumer initiatives.

Currently being trialed in 45 outlets, the "try before you buy" and "no quibble - no questions" money back guarantee initiatives were launched last week at the Fox and Hounds in Theale, near Reading.

Licensees from 45 pubs in the Thames Valley have been chosen as trial sites and they were also at the launch to hear Cask Marque director Paul Nunny explain the scheme.

One of the criticisms levelled at Cask Marque over the years has been its failure to be recognised as a standard by the general public and this may have deterred some companies from joining. It is hoped this latest push to consumers will help widen its appeal.

John Roberts, beer and brands director at Fuller's, was a founding member of the Cask Marque initiative. He said: "The more brewers and pub operators that are part of this the better, and there are some notable companies who are missing from that list.

"It would really help if we could all get behind this."

Nunny said the latest move was part of a big push to spread the word among consumers. He said: "We want to raise customer confidence and to encourage them to be more adventurous. We're all the same - we know what we like - but we want to tempt people into trying cask ale."

He added: "We have 1,500 licensees with the award now and we want to give ale a presence in an outlet and give Cask Marque a value to the customer."

The trial is in two parts. The first - "try before you buy" - will mean customers can taste a real ale, in a small branded glass, before deciding whether to commit to a pint.

The second - the "no quibble, no question" money back guarantee - is just how it sounds. Customers can try a pint of real ale, and get their money back if they do not enjoy it.

Licensees can choose whether to run both initiatives or just one, depending on the range of real ale they stock.

Related topics: Beer

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