Today saw the release of the National Cask Ale Report 2010-2011. The report is written by Pete Brown and reports on the latest trends in the beer and pub market, It’s choc full of facts and figures and is well worth a read.
I digested most of it over my first cuppa of the day and I will be finishing reading it tonight but the bits I’ve picked up so far are that despite the recession/economic downturn/what ever the latest buzz word for it is:
- Cask ale now accounts for 15.2% of total on-trade beer (up from 14.5% in 2008).
- Most brewers seeing volume growth – except multinationals
- One of the absurdities of cask ale is that, as the most crafted, quality drink on the bar, it is often the cheapest.Nine out of ten pubs in the UK sell cask ale at a lower price than lagers of the same strength
- Number of drinkers continues to increase
- 17% increase in younger drinkers
- Cask beer drinkers are more curious and experimental in a broader sense
The bit on price was quite interesting, I know a few local brewers who sell their ale cheaply in pubs in order to try and encourage people who don’t drink ale to try theirs, whether or not that works I don’t know.
Not sure I agree with the younger drinkers are less clued up bit… I tend to find (locally at least) that it’s the oder drinkers, they aren’t willing to experiment or try new beers, if something is above a certain ABV or from a brewery thats seen as young and trendy they tend to dismiss it, sticking to what they know and love…usually the 4% bitters.
Personally, overall I think the report is a great insight into what has and is happening in the beer industry but there are a few bits that got me thinking and a few bits that I don’t necessarily agree with (more on those at a later date)
I would also love to see a bit more info on the micro brewweries as opposed to Marstons and Greene King and would love to have access to some of the raw statistics to interpret, although that’s probably just the geek in me coming out.
You can also read Hardknott Dave’s views on the cask report here