David Grant, managing director of Moorhouse’s Brewery, is wrong to call for the scrapping of tax relief for brewers who produce less than 3,000 barrels a year. Instead they should be joining forces with breweries of any size to lobby against excessive duty on UK-made beer.
Micro-breweries play an important part in a marketplace increasingly dominated by multi-national breweries by keeping traditional real ale at the forefront of the Great British pub-going experience. I would hate to see the number of micro-breweries fall if important tax relief is axed.
Wholesale reform of beer tax is long overdue. The recent budget which saw just a measly one penny of duty cut from a pint of beer does not go far enough, especially when you consider that VAT, at 20%, makes visiting a pub to enjoy a pint of real ale very costly anyway. It is little wonder more people drink at home.
With the future of the British pub at stake, small and medium-sized breweries must unite and get behind the pub industry and fight to drastically reduce the tax on UK-made beer.
Paul Nuttall, UKIP Burnley MEP