The FINANCIAL — Pub beer sales fell yet again in 2011, down 3.4% for the year, although off-trade sales were also down, according to Caterer and Hotelkeeper.
The British Beer and Pub Association's Beer Barometer showed that the falls had helped contribute to 9,000 job losses in the beer and pub sector in 2011, and the association said it demonstrated a "pressing need" for change in the Government's beer tax policy.
The decline was in fact slower than in the previous year – and the lowest rate since 2004 – but the BBPA claimed it could be halted altogether, saving thousands of jobs, if the Government abandoned plans for more above-inflation rises in the Beer Tax in the March Budget.
Off-trade beer sales were down 3.7% over the year, the first time since 1996 that the off-trade has put in a weaker performance than the on-trade. Total beer volumes fell by 3.5%.