Brewer holds prices due to ‘troubling’ pub closure rate

British beer producer Adnams will freeze its beer prices in support for the UK pub industry, which it says is facing “extremely challenging” conditions.

(Photo: Wiki)

(Photo: Wiki)

Andy Wood, chief executive of the Suffolk-based brewer, said: “We are very mindful that the trading environment for pubs in particular remains extremely challenging.

“We fundamentally believe that pubs have a unique and important place in communities and their continued closure rate remains troubling. When allied to the significant competitive pressures they face this is something that we cannot ignore.

“We held Adnams beer prices during the period 2009 to 2014 and with such things as fuel prices at their lowest level for years feel it is appropriate to do so once again.”

The announcement means that, with the exception of duty increases, Adnams beer prices will be held for the UK on-trade for the remainder of 2016.

The rate of pub closures in the UK currently stands at 27 per week, down from 29 per week in the first half of 2015, according to the Campaign for Real Ale.

Despite the slowdown in closures, Camra chief executive Tim Page recently warned the “fragile recovery” of the pub industry “could very quickly be reversed if the government fails to build on this positive development and misses the chance to support the British pub and beer industry by reducing tax again”.

Camra as well as the Scotch Whisky Association, the British Beer and Pub Association and the Wine and Spirit Trade Association are lobbying for further cuts to drinks taxes to support producers and the pub trade.

Their calls have received support from independent think-tank the Institute for Fiscal Studies, which recently said there is a “clear case for reform” of the British alcohol tax regime.

Adnams beer brands include Ghost Ship, Southwold Bitter, Broadside and the Jack Brand range.

Last week it relaunched its Prop Hop ale to coincide with the beginning of the RBS Six Nations rugby championship.

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