The initiative will focus on reducing the overall tax burden for pubs, and in turn reducing the VAT level that retailers are forced to pass on to their customers. Pubs currently pay 20% VAT.
Political consultant and hospitality industry advisor Chris Guyver has been appointed to head up the campaign, drawing on his 20-year experience and history of advising on licensing reform.
Guyver has argued that the tax burden on pubs is too high, that supermarkets have an unfair advantage over pubs, and that this inhibits job creation and investment.
He said: “Unlike other countries in Europe, the British Government hasn’t taken action to reduce VAT in the sector, despite the positive contribution it would make to job creation. We believe it should address this important issue.”
BBPA chief executive Brigid Simmonds said: “I am delighted we will be working together on this campaign. I have always believed that action is needed to tackle the VAT burden on pubs, not least because when it comes to food, it is a burden that falls too heavily on our sector.”
ALMR chief executive Kate Nicholls said: “We are delighted to be working together with the BBPA and its members in order to address the important issues of tax and VAT. Food led pubs and casual dining restaurants are labour and property intensive, and the high tax burden is a barrier to jobs, growth and investment.”