Duty Calls – How is trade affected by Budget?

IN the March Budget, chancellor George Osborne axed the beer duty escalator and cut tax by 1p a pint. But what impact will it have on draught beer sales?

“It’s still early days but I very much doubt that it will have much effect. To really make an impact duty would have to be dramatically reduced to civilised European levels” – Jill Sutherland, head of operations in Scotland.

“It is currently too early to say what impact the 2013 Budget has had on sales. However, the end of the beer duty escalator and a cut of 1p a pint in duty will go a long way to helping secure jobs in our industry and preserving the pleasure of a hard earned pint at the end of the day” – John Gemmell, trading director.

Tennent Caledonian:
“The beer duty escalator was a contributing factor to pub closures and job losses across the hospitality industry. It is a positive step for our customers that the government has recognised the important contribution that brewing and pubs make to the economy” – spokeswoman.

Carlsberg UK:
“The duty reduction and removal of the duty escalator was undoubtedly very welcome news for consumers, but it’s not easy to isolate the impact – in the short term, an improvement in the weather probably has just as much influence on whether customers go to the pub” – David Scott, director of brands and insight.