Pints costing £7 will become 'the new norm' brewery boss warns blaming Russia and rising costs

26 October 2022, 06:53 | Updated: 26 October 2022, 07:10

The stark warning for pub goers comes as the industry struggles to recover from Covid.
The stark warning for pub goers comes as the industry struggles to recover from Covid. Picture: Getty
EJ Ward

By EJ Ward

Brewery chief warns that inflation, the weaker pound and spiraling costs could hit the hospitality sector extremely hard, causing soaring prices for pints.

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The average price of a pint is set to become the norm at £7, brewery bosses have warned blaming soaring production costs and inflation which have created a perfect storm.

The cost of raw ingredients, including wheat and barley, are now rising more than the rate of inflation.

It has not been a great year for UK pub chains. Despite lockdown restrictions being lifted, the hospitality sector has been hit by energy price hikes and customers feeling the pinch amid the cost of living crisis.

Read more: 'Log bank' in UK's coldest town amid fears energy costs will put lives at risk

"During lockdown, dyed-in-the-wool pub-goers, many for the first time, filled their fridges with supermarket beer – and it has proved to be a momentous challenge to persuade them to return to the more salubrious environment of the saloon bar,” Wetherspoons chairman Tim Martin said.

Martin added that the expected post-lockdown boom had not happened and that publicans had experienced painstakingly slow recoveries paired with hugely inflated costs.

Read more: Rishi's team to 'fix' Britain: Continuity Cabinet sees return of Hunt, Gove and Braverman

UK brewer Brewgooder has called on the public and the government to support the pub trade amid their warning of £7 pints.

Alan Mahon, Brewgooder's founder, said Russia’s invasion of Ukraine had driven up ingredient costs.

Mr Mahon said the cost of raw ingredients such as wheat and barley were rising well in excess of the inflation rate.

Inflation returned to a 40-year-high of 10.1% in September, driven by rising food prices - the first time inflation has gone above 10% in 1982

Wheat and barley, two crucial components of brewing, he explains, are rising well in excess of the rate of inflation and other key ‘unseen’ materials such as energy and gas – have hit eye-watering levels, with carbon dioxide now costing a whopping 3,000% more than it did this time last year.

Brewers were also facing spiralling prices for energy and gas, which were at record highs. And the price of carbon dioxide — essential for the brewing process — was now costing 3,000% higher than this time last year.

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