Pubs urged to use food to boost beer sales

Related tags Market report Beer

Report identifies eating experience as occasion to increase salesIncreasing the consumption of beer with food is the next challenge for the pub...

Report identifies eating experience as occasion to increase sales

Increasing the consumption of beer with food is the next challenge for the pub trade, according to a market report published on behalf of Belgian brewing giant Interbrew.

The report recommends that licensees identify occasions when customers are likely to visit a pub to eat and capitalise on this to boost beer sales.

Introducing special "meal deal" offers, for example, can help boost profits, or selling larger beer bottles that can be shared by diners.

Allan Tudor, sales director for the on-trade at Interbrew, explained the importance of the identifying eating and drinking occasions.

"We really have got to fit into whatever occasion people are drinking for," he said. "And this shows expanding beer consumption with food is a massive market."

Mr Tudor said the eating out market was something that would grow over the next decade as people became more wealthy but had less leisure time.

"This is a massive opportunity for pubs, retailers and ourselves," he said. "As beer volumes go down it's important for pubs to take advantage of these opportunities."

Interbrew has formed a special team of sales and marketing staff to make sure this chance for growth is not passed by.

Mr Tudor said: "We will be encouraging our customers to put beer on their menus.

"We want them to see that selling a bottle of Stella can produce as much, if not more, value than a bottle of wine and it can be more effective on certain occasions.

"We want people to associate beer with food so selling things such as Murphy's pie is a good idea.

"And we know that 75 per cent of people will be influenced by what they see, so table cards are important."

He said pub chains such as Yates's and JD Wetherspoon, which promote Asian beer to drink with curry, were taking advantage of pub food opportunities.

Interbrew's market report also identified five common occasions when people drink in a pub: eating out, socialising, an overnight stay, common interest or a big night out.

Socialising was the most wide-ranging of the occasions and included post-work drinks and relaxing with two or three friends.

Overnight stays included weekend breaks and business trips while common interest included leisure pursuits.

Big night out was generally a Friday or Saturday and youth-oriented.

Eating out was one of the more narrow categories - but promised the most opportunity.

It is early days yet, but Interbrew is confident the results of its latest market report will give it the information it needs to build beer sales for the company and its customers.

Related topics Beer

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