Off-trade beer sales hit record third-quarter high

Record off-trade figures have pushed beer sales back into growth, according to the latest quarterly figures from the British Beer & Pub Association.

Over all, third-quarter sales saw 3.9% growth year on year, the BBPA’s Beer Barometer reveals.

However, growth in the off-trade was 9% for the three months to September, taking volumes to 3.724 million barrels, the highest third quarter figures recorded.

The BBPA believes the Rugby World Cup was a major contributory factor to the uplift.

Sales in the on-trade declined by 1.2% in the same period.

Total beer sales are stable, down by just 0.4% year on year.

Brigid Simmonds, chief executive of the BBPA, said: “Congratulations to Britain brewers on a very strong quarter of sales in what is one of the UK’s most vital manufactured goods.

“There is a real opportunity to build on these strong figures and secure future growth, with continued action to reduce beer duty. Despite positive action from the Government, with three, one penny duty cuts in recent years, duty still places far too great a burden on British brewers and beer drinkers when compared to our main competitors in the European Union.

 “With further tax cuts we can create jobs and protect pubs, where beer is the cornerstone of sales.”