The Fair Pint Campaign

News: Fair Pint Welcomes Ministers’ Comments on the Future of the Tie

5 March 2009

The Fair Pint Campaign has welcomed comments from Treasury Minister Angela Eagle and Licensing Minister Gerry Sutcliffe stating that that the tie is a reason for the problems faced by the pub sector and the tied tenancy business model needs to be reconsidered.

Brian Jacobs from the Fair Pint Campaign said:

“We welcome the comments from Angela Eagle and Gerry Sutcliffe which show that the future of the tie is clearly on the Government’s radar.   Ministers have seen through the smokescreen thrown up by the ‘pubco’s’ representatives, the British Beer and Pub Association, that the levels of duty are the main reason for the increase in pub closures.”

“It is clear that the tie, which means that beer is 50-70p a pint more expensive to tied tenants, is a more significant cause of the difficulties faced by publicans than this year’s 3p per pint increase in beer duty.  We look forward to working with the Government and parliamentarians to stop the damage which the tie is causing to our community pubs.”

“If the British Beer and Pub Association are serious about the future of Community pubs why aren’t they putting pressure on their ‘pubco’ members to reduce beer prices and rents rather than seeking to mislead the public that the rate of duty is the main problem facing the sector?” 


Notes to editors

The Ministers’ Comments were made at yesterday’s parliamentary Beer Group Summit on the future of pubs.

Angela Eagle MP said:

“There are issues about the pub ownership structure that impact on some of this [the issues affecting pubs]."

She said the tie is "something perhaps people working here can think about how to approach. Those business models do have an impact."

Gerry Sutcliffe said:

“There are measures that Government can take, certainly, but there is action the industry can take. The issue around the tie needs to be looked at."

"Perhaps we need to look at that [the tie] again."

Fair Pint’s research has showed that an 11 gallon keg of Carling is available to publicans directly from the brewer Coors at £63.11; the price that Enterprise Inns would charge their tenants is at least £110 a keg, which equates to 53p a pint more.  The price differentials on other beers is often higher

Beer duty is currently equivalent to 36p a pint:

The chart below shows changes in duty per pint of beer up to 2012:

Pence per pint












(1) April to December. (2) January to March

(HC Debs, 12 Jan 2009 : Column 335W)

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