Autumn Statement response: Calderdale brewery owner’s message to Chancellor

Sue Cooper from Little Valley Brewery
Sue Cooper from Little Valley Brewery

Following today’s Autumn Statement, a Calderdale brewery owner is urging the Chancellor to offer reassurance to the beer industry.

Sue Cooper, co-owner of Little Valley Brewery in Cragg Vale, said: “Whilst we do appreciate that an increase in beer duty has not been put forward in today’s Autumn Statement, which is a real positive for the brewing industry, we had hoped for a freeze or cut to be announced.

“The UK currently has the second highest beer duty rate in the EU, meaning it’s a challenging industry out there for brewers of all sizes.

“With Brexit in progress, the squeeze on our industry is even tighter as costs for raw materials and energy are both rising alongside threats of increased inflation, which is compounded by the uncertainty at this time during the transition out of Europe.

“Furthermore, OBR Chairman Robert Chote is estimating that consumers will be 3% poorer following today’s Statement, meaning harder times for our industry could be on the horizon, however the doubling of Rural Rate Relief is definitely a positive move to support rural pubs across the country.

“We now urge the Chancellor to offer reassurance to our industry when we need it most”.