St Patrick’s Day helps managed on-trade sales rise 7% versus 2019

By Gary Lloyd contact

- Last updated on GMT

Contributing factors: St Patrick’s Day, good weather and rugby helped boost weekly sales (credit: Getty/vadimguzhva)
Contributing factors: St Patrick’s Day, good weather and rugby helped boost weekly sales (credit: Getty/vadimguzhva)

Related tags: Finance, Pubco + head office, Multi-site pub operators, Spirits

St Patrick’s Day celebrations helped lift out-of-home drinks sales by 7% last week versus pre-pandemic levels, according to insights expert CGA’s latest Drinks Recovery Tracker.

The rise, which accounted for average drinks sales by value in Britain’s managed pubs, bars and restaurants over the week to last Saturday (12 March) – compared to the same week in 2019 – marks the best performance of 2022 so far.

After several weeks of parity with pre-pandemic levels, it suggests the drinking-out market’s recovery is building momentum. However, with inflation currently running at 6% for the past year alone, sales remain well below pre-pandemic patterns in real terms.

Spirit sales up 25%

The success in trading was boosted by St Patrick’s Day celebrations on Thursday (17 March) up by 37% on the same day in 2019. And cited as reasons for the uplift were the welcome clement weather on Friday (up 7%) and Saturday (up 11%), which including the final round of matches in the Six Nations rugby tournament.

Across the week, spirits sales were 25% up on the same period in 2019, while beer (up 7%) and cider (up 10%) recorded year-high growth as well.


More on horizon

CGA managing director, UK and Ireland, Jonathan Jones, said: “Last week’s trading figures show the hard work of Britain’s pubs, bars and restaurants to build back from two years of disruption is paying off. They also emphasise the value that good weather and celebratory occasions like St Patrick’s Day can bring to the on-premises, and with more sunshine, Mother’s Day and Easter on the horizon, operators can be cautiously optimistic about trading.

“However, confirmation this week of high inflation and the end to hospitality’s VAT relief, and mounting pressure on consumers’ disposable incomes, remind us that a return to pre-Covid-19 normality is still some way off.”

CGA’s weekly Drinks Recovery Tracker monitors managed outlet sales.

Related topics: Events & Occasions

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