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30th April 2019

Beer Marque – Driving Quality Standards

Cask Marque are taking the learnings from cask beer and will apply them to all beer with the launch of a new accreditation scheme – Beer Marque.

To gain Beer Marque outlets must:

  • Pass a cellar inspection to ensure they are using best practice to deliver beer quality and reduce losses from wastage
  • Use appropriate branded glassware and ensure glasswashing machines are kept in good working order
  • Ensure ice machines are hygienically maintained – very relevant after recent criticism
  • Train bar staff to present the perfect pint

Pubs will be given a Beer Experience star rating based on the above.

The scheme will tackle a number of key issues:

  • Pubs over ranging and thus selling beer of poor quality due to lack of throughput
  • 1 in 3 pints is served via beerlines overdue a clean
  • 22% of sites serving beer are outside brewers’ recommended temperature specification
  • Bar staff know little about beer and how to serve
  • (Vianet stats)

Cask Marque has undertaken over 7,000 cellar inspections and the average score is 3 star. The industry must drive up standards so we can maximise outlets’ profitability from beer. Through Cask Marque’s 55 assessors we can deliver 1-2-1 training in best practice and highlight the commercial benefits.

Paul Nunny, Director of Cask Marque felt their new accreditation would premiumise the beer category just as Fever Tree has to the gin sector. “Customers expect a great beer experience when in the pub. Quality and serve are of utmost importance to them. The pubs’ reward is in more sales and less waste. This accreditation allows us to engage with the major brewers who also recognise the importance of a quality product.

Jerry Shedden, category and trade marketing manager, HEINEKEN UK, says:

“Cask Marque has trail blazed consumer understanding and recognising pubs that serve great quality cask beer. With the beer marketing evolving, it’s a fantastic step forward that the same principle should be applied to all beer. Beer Marque will mean that those pubs serving the very best, consistent, quality pints, in the correct clean glassware, will be able to proudly display their Beer Marque seal of approval.”

Both Diageo with Guinness and Hophouse 13 and Budweiser Brewing with Stella Artois are working closely with the Beer Marque team to develop the quality scheme. Positive conversations are already happening with Stonegate, Punch and EI Group together with Bourne Leisure Group.

Inspections start in May backed by a trade marketing campaign with a consumer programme due in 2020 when we have over 2,000 plaques on walls. Our aim is to champion 15,000 pubs that deliver the great beer experience to their customers.

Editor’s notes:

What has Cask Marque achieved?

  • 9,596 pubs with the award
  • Renewal rate – 85%
  • 77% consumer recognition (CaskFinder App)
  • 55 assessors
  • Introduced star rating scheme for cellars

What have we gained as an industry?

  • Independently quality assured scheme recognised by consumers
  • Expertise in quality assessments
  • Reporting quality by pub
  • Raised the quality agenda
  • Cooled beer from cellar to glass
  • Increased sales, yields & profitability

Cask Marque is a not for profit organisation formed in 1998 to “ensure an exceptional beer experience is available to every drinker”.

Reasons for failing cellar inspections from 7000 inspections

  • 31% cellar temperature
  • 29% line cleaning
  • 26% glass cleanliness
  • 26% Ale python not working
  • 22% no beer jackets

Annually Cask Marque undertakes 22,000 visits to pubs

For further information do contact

Paul Nunny

07768 614065