Grim beer future?

CAMRA looks 30 years ahead, calls for national strategy

Oct 10, 2002 - CAMRA, the Campaign for Real Ale, is predicting huge changes in the British beer and pubs market over the next 30 years resulting in an increased stranglehold by large global companies. It claims that by 2032, if current trends continue:


  • There will be just two major brewers producing two beer brands each
  • Two big pub chains will control over 50% of all pubs with anincrease in themed identikit bars
  • Nearly 8,000 local community pubs will have closed, many having been turned into private houses
  • 60% of all beer will be drunk at home with people enjoying a pint in "virtual pubs" from the comfort of their arm chairs
  • An increase of 40% (to 600) in the number of small specialized breweries selling local real ales, but with a tiny share of the total market
  • A pint of beer will cost 20 new Euros (or 25 in "old" money!)

    Roger Protz, editor of the Good Beer Guide, said, "These are generally gloomy predictions which could become a reality if Britain does not begin to look after its beer industry. Since the first Good Beer Guide was published over forty traditional family brewers have closed, national brewers have swallowed up and closed over two dozen breweries and the stranglehold of the big brewers has increased two-fold with the top four now controlling 85% of the beer market."

    Protz will present his views during a key note speech at a special dinner Saturday (Oct. 12) to celebrate 30 years of the Good Beer Guide.

    "If we want to continue to enjoy the great British pint in local pubs of the future, action needs to be taken by the Government now," Protz said, "in the form of a national strategy to deal with growing anti-competitiveness by the large pub chains and global brewers."

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