BBPA book to expose myths around alcohol

By Matt Eley Matt

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Alcohol consumption, Alcoholic beverage, Beer, Pound sterling

Falling alcohol consumption, the rise of bottled and canned beer, and the average price of a British pint are all revealed in a new book from the...

Falling alcohol consumption, the rise of bottled and canned beer, and the average price of a British pint are all revealed in a new book from the British Beer & Pub Association (BBPA).

The BBPA Statistical Handbook,​ which is published this week, exposes the myths around drinking in the UK, according to the organisation.

Statistics in the book show alcohol consumption fell last year and is 6.1 per cent lower than in 2004 - which goes against claims of increases in alcohol consumption.

The book also reveals that the sales of cheap booze in the off-trade is having an impact on the pub industry.

It also shows that a typical pint of lager costs £2.81 - up five pence on 2008 and a typical pint of bitter now costs £2.49 - up eight pence.

And according to the book Britons drink less than the French, Germans, and Spanish, with the Czechs drinking the most per head, at 12.4 litres of alcohol, compared to the UK's 8.1 litres.

BBPA acting chief executive David Long said: "Year on year, we are not drinking more. Nor is British beer getting stronger, with two thirds of our beer at or below 4.2 per cent strength, compared to the continental standard of five per cent.

"These facts, along with thousands of others, make this publication an essential tool for anyone with an interest in an industry that is so vital to the UK economy."

BBPA statistics

  • Packaged sales (bottles and cans) overtook draught sales (kegs and casks) in terms of volume of beer sold in the UK in 2008
  • 27 per cent of on-trade wine sales were in the London area compared to only 16 per cent of beer sales
  • Total expenditure on alcohol in the hospitality sector (on-trade) was at its lowest level since 1972
  • Average price of a pint of beer in tenanted/leased pubs was £2.66, the same as in independent pubs
  • Brewing companies own 9,100 of UK pubs, 16 per cent of total
  • At 12.4 litres per capita, the Czech Republic is the largest consumer of alcohol in the EU

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