The price of a pint is set to rise by 50p in the UK as industry insiders warn pubs risk going bust.
Rising costs of beer, energy, food and labour are putting pressure on pubs as they battle to stay afloat amid soaring inflation and supply chain problems.
UKHospitality said pubs were facing “unprecedented” price rises.
How could the cost of a pint go up?
Currently the average cost of a pint in the UK is £4.07, according to the British Beer and Pub Association.
It estimates that Londoners pay £4.84 on average, but some pubs in the capital are already charging over £6.
For example, The Bunch of Grapes in Borough charges £6.75 for a pint of Amstel, while Staropramen in The World’s End in Camden costs £6.70.
It is expected that a cost of a pint could go up by 50p, meaning customers in the capital may have to pay over £7 .
Dave Mountford, co-founder of the Forum of British Pubs and manager at The Boat Inn, in Derbyshire, warned that drinkers will face rises of more than 50p.
He said: “We’re putting prices up now and soon we’ll break the £4 a pint on cask ale for the first time ever.
“Our most expensive pint is a premium lager and it’s £4.80 – it was £3.75 two years ago.”
Why are prices increasing?
Nik Antona, CAMRA’s National Chairman, said the sector is continuing to deal with “employment, supply chain and cost of good crises” which is causing the price of a pint to rise.
She said: “This could spell disaster at the pump for small brewers and publicans if consumers make the decision to stay at home to cut corners.”
Earlier this week the chairman of the City Pub Company Clive Watson said that ‘pub inflation’ was currently running at about 10%.
James Calder, chief executive of Society of Independent Brewers, explained: “We have seen huge spikes in people costs, transport, raw ingredients and energy.
“With most brewers running very tight ships already, our sector unfortunately needs to be able to pass on these price rises to customers including the pubs in between. Otherwise they will go bust.
“No business likes to raise its prices but right now it is a necessity to survive.”
What could be done to prevent the price hike?
Industry experts have urged the government to scrap the 12.5% VAT rate on pubs, restaurants and hotels, and have called for the scheduled rise back up to 20% in April to be scrapped.
Experts claim these measures could help ease pressure on the industry.