Thursday, 28 January 2010

On Trade Bears Brunt of Sales Slump

Sales through the off-trade fell 3.1% in 2009, the biggest decline since records began in 1978, according to the British Beer & Pub Association (BBPA). However, the decline was less than that experienced in Britain’s 54,000 pubs where sales fell 5.2%, contributing to an overall reduction in beer sales of 4.2%.

Still there is a silver lining in this cloud in that the decline in beer sales is slowing. The BBPA has revealed details of its Quarterly Beer Barometer which shows that while sales are still declining the rate of fall has dropped. For the last three months of 2009 sales were down 3.6 per cent – the lowest fourth quarter fall since 2006.

This of course could all be derailed by duty increases and increases passed on to the drinker by PubCos and brewers. In my own neck of the woods, beer sales as in "money off" are appearing, but one thing the figures show is that the recession has affected even cheap at home drinkers and shows that to some at least, at the poorest end of the market, that price affects consumption, unless of course they've all switched to cheap supermarket voddy.

Nonetheless it confirms in my mind, not that it needed much confirming, that minimum pricing will largely affect the poorest amongst us. But of course, they shouldn't be drinking anyway, should they?


Unknown said...

An excellent point I think. I don't believe in minimum pricing because I think it is dangerous for government to meddle with the free market forces. You my disagree with me there.

But, it is indeed the hardworking people on minimum wage who would suffer the most by such measures. Why should they not be allowed a couple of cheap tinnies at the end of a hard day?

Tandleman said...

I really don't know, but on the whole I don't believe in it either.

As for government not interfering with market forces, I think recent events with the bank have shot that fox.

John West said...

'As for government not interfering with market forces, I think recent events with the bank have shot that fox.'

Very. Well. Said.