Who makes my beer? Logo will tell you the answer, and where it’s made
CAMRA is calling on brewers to end misleading marketing that fails to tell drinkers the origin of their beers,
According to research by the independent brewers’ association SIBA, 60% of beer drinkers want to know who brews their beer and whether it is owned by a global brewer.
Buyouts of formerly independent brewers by international brewing corporations have greatly increased the demand to be told more.
To give an example, Sharp’s, brewers of the popular Doom Bar, was taken over by Molson Coors in 2011.
There was a big fuss two years ago when drinkers discovered that since 2013, bottled Doom Bar had been brewed in Burton-on-Trent, 267 miles from the Sharp’s Brewery, even though the bottles still said “Rock Cornwall”.
Brewers are entitled to brew their products where they wish, but equally their customers have the right to be told about it.
Takeovers and moving beer production are of course nothing new.
For example, Higsons of Liverpool, a once popular regional brewer, was taken over twice, finally in 1990 being owned by Whitbread, who quickly closed the Liverpool brewery and eventually moved production to the North East, 150 miles from its Mersey origins.
Today global breweries are keen to acquire a share of the UK’s successful real ale and craft beer markets.
The easiest way for them to do that is to take over existing small, independent breweries such as Meantime by SABMiller, Camden Town by ABInBev and London Fields by Carlsberg.
As a result, many drinkers do not realise that what looks like an independent local beer can be owned by one of the global brands.
In response, SIBA is introducing a scheme whereby their members can add a logo to their beers’ point of sale to demonstrate they are independent, an initiative that Camra welcomes.
On a happier note, SIBA’s research also showed that half of beer drinkers are now drinking local beer, rising to 61% for 25 to 34-year-olds, which suggests a healthy future for British brewing.
The 7th Longton Beer Festival will run on September 22 and 23 with beers from Lancashire, Yorkshire and beyond. Longton VM Sports & Social Club, School Lane, Longton, Preston, PR4 5YA.
See the website at www.longtonvm. co.uk.
The Southport and West Lancs Camra website is at: www.southport. camra.org.uk.
For previous Camra articles in this paper, please go to: tinyurl.com/vispubs.
Longton Beer Festival is now in its 7th year