Craft beer price drop un­likely

Lo­cal brew­ers not af­fected

Tweed Daily News - - NEWS - Bob An­thony

IT SEEMS the froth and bub­bles sur­round­ing the prospect of cheaper craft beers af­ter Fed­eral Trea­surer Scott Mor­ri­son’s pre-bud­get an­nounce­ment have gone as flat as a hot beer in the sun.

Mr Mor­ri­son an­nounced that all beer sold in kegs larger than eight litres would be taxed in the same way as kegs larger than 48 litres.

Prior to the an­nounce­ment, brew­ers who used 30-litre kegs were taxed 40 per cent more than those who used 50-litre kegs.

At the time, the Trea­surer said: “This not only cham­pi­ons the craft brew­ers that we’ve all grown to love, it raises a very tan­ta­lis­ing prospect for Aus­tralians: the like­li­hood of cheaper craft beer.”

How­ever, craft brew­ers on the Gold Coast and Tweed, while wel­com­ing the change, said it won’t make any dif­fer­ence price wise.

Black Hops Brew­ing co-founder Michael Mcgovern said there were very few craft brew­ers who used 30-litre kegs and while the tax on them would be cheaper, it wouldn’t be prac­ti­cal or cost ef­fec­tive to change.

“We use pre­dom­i­nantly 50-litre kegs and for us to stock up on 30-litre kegs wouldn’t be worth­while,” he said.

“Our more pop­u­lar brews are sup­plied to venues in 50-litre kegs and while there may be op­por­tu­ni­ties for us to put sea­sonal or spe­cial-re­lease brews into the smaller kegs, the bot­tom line is that the tax re­lief won’t have sig­nif­i­cant im­pact on the cost price to craft beer drinkers.”

Tweed Heads’ Pickle Pig Brew­ery owner Paul Brewer said the Fed­eral Gov­ern­ment changes would have lit­tle to no ef­fect on his op­er­a­tions.

“I have 120 of the 50-litre kegs so it doesn’t im­pact on my cost price for my beer,” he said. “I couldn’t af­ford to change over to the smaller kegs but it might be some­thing to con­sider down the track.

“For smaller brew­ers like our­selves, we de­liver our own beers to venues so it be­comes a mat­ter of lo­gis­tics in terms of the num­ber of kegs a place wants and on a prac­ti­cal level how many they can store on site.

“While the tax re­duc­tion is a pos­i­tive move, I don’t think drinkers will see a drop in prices across the bar.”

Black Hops Brew­ing co-founder Michael Mcgovern said moves to cut tax on smaller kegs won't re­sult in cheaper drinks.

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