On-trade beer sales fall despite good weather and World Cup boost

By James Beeson contact

- Last updated on GMT

Boost for off-trade: an increase in beer sales has been primarily driven by outlets such as supermarkets
Boost for off-trade: an increase in beer sales has been primarily driven by outlets such as supermarkets
Overall beer sales in the second quarter of 2018 were up 3.6% - but down 1% in the on-trade - versus the same period in 2017, according the latest ‘Beer Barometer’ sales data from the British Beer & Pub Association (BBPA).

The increase in beer sales in Q2 2018 was primarily driven by off-trade outlets such as supermarkets, which saw beer sales rise by 7.7% against the same period in 2017.

By comparison, on-trade sales decreased by 1% year on year, although this was a significant improvement on Q2 beer sales from the past 10 years, where the average fall in on-trade beer sales has been 3.7%.

World Cup boost

The improvement is thought to have been due to the good weather during Q2 2018, as well as the beginning of the FIFA World Cup and the continued positive effects of the beer duty freeze implemented by Chancellor Philip Hammond in November 2017.

There are fears, however, that a beer duty increase could be on the cards in the next Budget. In response, the campaign Long Live The Local​ – from Britain’s Beer Alliance – has been launched,​ calling for a cut in beer tax to decrease the significant cost pressures pubs face and help give them a boost.  

Speaking about the Q2 Beer Barometer, BBPA chief executive Brigid Simmonds said: “It’s certainly good to see that beer sales are doing better overall. There is a very real threat, however, that the Chancellor will increase beer tax again in the Budget later this year, which would be a huge backward step after so much progress has been made since he froze beer duty last year."

'Unprecedented' tax pressures

She added: “We need further cuts in beer tax to help pubs and the great British brewing manufacturing industry.”

David Cunningham, programme director of Britain’s Beer Alliance, which is behind the Long Live The Local​ campaign, added:  “The Long Live The Local​ campaign celebrates the vital role pubs play in people’s lives and their communities. It also highlights the range of tax pressures that pubs face and encourages pubgoers to go to their local and call on politicians to cut beer tax.

“Pubs face an unprecedented range of tax pressures including beer duty, which means that £1 in every £3 spent in a pub goes to the taxman. This clearly is a factor behind declining beer sales in pubs, pub closures and job losses.”

Related topics: Beer

Related news

Show more