Thursday, 18 November 2010

on trade to shrink to 30% of beer sales by 2018 ... SHOCK! HORROR!

So the head of Molson Coors, Mark Huner, predicts ... well no surprise there with all major brewers bending over and taking it like good 'uns for the supermarkets is it?

And whilst I'm on the subject, with news that Tesco is to slash the price of spirits in the run-up to Christmas — despite admitting "it is not necessary and is financially damaging". (Tesco spirits manager Mark Sudbery told the Metro) it's no wonder the British pub is buggered.

I am just amazed at the hypocrisy of these people, just goes to show that the never-ending pursuit of profit goes before all other considerations, including their duty to be responsible retailers.
Still time to go to local council licensing committees and report such irresponsible behaviour - if only we had a campaign to report these flagrant breaches of the responsible retailing guidelines (and if only the guidelines had some bite!) After all it is the British taxpayer that picks up the bill for these loss leading strategies and in these times of austerity surely this is irresponsible and reprehensible?
Seems to me that the predictions indicate a vast shrinkage in on-trade volumes and that can only mean one thing ... more pub closures.
I predict that the on-trade will have become polarised to an even greater extent by then with managed (food-led) operators leading the market at one end (with cheap on-sale pricing being a major factor in their alcohol sales) and at the other end highly skilled independent operators (probably mostly in the free of tie sector) succeeding with innovative offerings with unique points of difference.
The real losers will be run of the mill tied operators, who become increasingly cash starved by the rapacious activities of their landlords and the tax collectors who simply give up the ghost.
Remember Keynes said " the market can stay irrational longer than you can stay solvent"
He also said "The biggest problem is not to let people accept new ideas, but to let them forget the old ones." and "The difficulty lies not so much in developing new ideas as in escaping from old ones" - these statements are a quandary for the pub trade ... how can we evolve when the thing we most cherish lies in the past (the traditional pub) if only he were alive today to add some sage words.

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