Pub Sales Plummet in UK

Huge drop seen in third quarter

The United Kingdom has seen a 7.2% drop in beer sales during the third quarter of 2008, on the heels of last quarter’s 4.5% drop, according to a report by the British Beer & Pub Association in its Quarterly Beer Barometer report.

Over 161 million fewer pints were sold in July to September this year compared to the same period in 2007 – equivalent to 1.8 million pints a day and the largest third-quarter fall for a decade.

Sales were also down in off-premise, falling by 6% in the third quarter compared to last year.

The new figures highlight the impact the economic downturn and weaker consumer confidence is having on British households, says BBPA Chief Executive Rob Hayward. “The downturn has now broadened to affect sales through both pubs and supermarkets. This sales trend is symptomatic of the problems infecting the broader economy,” he said.

BBPA also attributed the decline down to the impact of heavy taxes on alcohol and the recent smoking ban.