Cask ale ‘helping pubs to survive’

By Luke Nicholls

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Beer

This is the fifth annual Cask Report and the fourth year in which cask has outperformed the on-trade beer market
This is the fifth annual Cask Report and the fourth year in which cask has outperformed the on-trade beer market
Cask ale drinkers are twice as likely to visit the pub as non-cask drinkers, spend more when they’re there and, most importantly, can’t switch to the supermarket to purchase their favourite drink.

These are the findings of The Cask Report 2011-12, published today. Cask continues to outperform the UK beer market and now has a 15 per cent share, according to the British Beer and Pub Association (BBPA) - equating to around one in every six pints sold across the country.

Report author Pete Brown said: “Cask ale can help pubs to not only survive, but to thrive. It’s attracting new drinkers who spend more in the pub than non-cask drinkers, making them valuable customers.

“Cask is shaking off its historic ‘flat cap’ image and is instead seen by younger consumers as a ‘cool’ drink. This increasingly positive picture of cask can only be good news for the pubs who sell it.”

A total of 7.8 million people drink cask beer in the UK – an 11 per cent increase since 2007. The number of 18-24 year old cask drinkers increased for the second year running and the number of women drinkers has doubled since 2008.

Affluent drinkers

“Cask is recruiting younger, affluent drinkers, growing distribution and, as our consumer research has shown, shaking off the negative image which has misrepresented it among target consumers for some years,” added Brown.

“Despite the decline in pub visits, cask drinkers are still going to the pub, spending on food and drink when there and, frequently, bringing groups of non-cask drinkers with them - as we’ve found that it’s usually the cask drinker who chooses the pub. If there’s a product out there that’s better designed for getting people back into Britain’s pubs, I can’t think of it.”

The ranks of cask ale drinkers are set to swell further next month thanks to National Cask Ale Week, running from 1-9 October. The campaign is focusing on 'Try Before You Buy', with 7,500 pubs offering free tasters all week.

Related topics: Pubs & Bars, Trends & Reports, Business

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hooray for the smoking ban

Posted by zee,

I'm very pleased about the smoking ban. I go to the pub *more* as a result. And 80% of the adult population of the UK today don't smoke. (Stat: cancer research UK), up from 50% non smokers 30 years ago.

So why would any business target the ever more shrinking smokers and drive away new business from the nons?

That said, lots of my friends smoke and still come to the pub, and while they still nip in and out for a fag most of them are happy they're not at it all night.

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Umbrella and new friends

Posted by Fredrik Eich,

"To be honest, I prefer going outside to smoke and have made many new friends under the umbrella in the beer garden." Al.
Good, for you Al. But to be honest I prefer to smoke inside because I don't like handing over money to be cold and wet. So when the smoking ban is relaxed that is where you will find me - inside smoking,drinking and relaxing with old friends.

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No Way

Posted by Tony,

I have not been in a Pub since the smoking ban was forced upon us, like many others I do not see why I should have to stand out in the cold and wet to enjoy an evening out and pay ridiculous prices for the dubious pleasure to do so.
House parties are the way to go cheaper drink, a fag and good company.

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