Three brewers push ahead with beer price rises

By Emily Sutherland

- Last updated on GMT

Heineken, Diaego and Molson Coors will up their prices
Heineken, Diaego and Molson Coors will up their prices

Related tags Molson coors Molson coors brewing company

Three major brewers have revealed their wholesale beer price rises for 2016 in a move likely to anger many licensees.

Molson Coors will raise the wholesale selling price on the majority of its draught products by approximately 3.5p per pint and Heineken by an average of 2% or 2.5p. Diageo will increase the price of a 50L keg of Guinness by 4% from the end of this month.

However, Greene King confirmed that it would freeze prices for the third year running on its own brewed products as part of an ongoing campaign to support the trade.

Several leading operators have hit out against beer price hikes, arguing they are unnecessary as inflation is low and ingredients and delivery costs are falling.

However, representatives from Molson Coors, Diageo and Heineken said that a need for investment was behind the higher prices and stressed that the increase had been kept to the ‘minimum level’.
A Heineken spokesperson said the average increase was down on last year’s average of 4%, adding: “We always seek to absorb as much as we can before passing on increases to our trade customers. Our increase also reflects the very comprehensive investment programme we continue to undertake, bringing new and exciting premium drinks to the market and attracting new customers to the on-trade.”

A Molson Coors spokesman added: “The price increase has been kept to the minimum level required to enable us to continue to invest in our business and customers. We are constantly working to manage the variety of different costs associated with production and supply of our beers and will continue to do so.”

All Our Bars chief executive Paul Wigham commended Greene King for keeping prices flat but warned that customers were beginning to question rising prices after hearing about well-publicised beer duty cuts. “We are reaching a point where the price we have to charge for beer could be beyond the reach of average consumers. Just look at how midweek trade has deteriorated in the last 15 years for operators,” he told the PMA.

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