Newly-elected MPs are being urged to raise a celebratory glass of British beer rather than imported fizz this Thursday.
The Society of independent Brewers (SIBA, is encouraging all 2000-plus Prospective Parliamentary Candidates (PCCs) to link up with a local brewer in their constituency and have a Patriotic Pint of Britain’s national drink ready if the vote goes their way.
The call to candidates builds on the success of SIBA’s Manifesto for British Beer, which was launched at the start of March. The manifesto sets out the compelling case for British beer, highlighting the contribution of independent brewers to their local economy, bringing investment and generating jobs, particularly among young adults.
Mike Benner, SIBA managing director, said, “Whether they’ll be mild or bitter after the votes have been counted, we hope all PCCs recognise the importance that beer plays in the British economy. Whatever their political allegiance, we want newly elected MPs to be photographed with a glass of honest British beer, not French fizz or Spanish sparkle.”
He added, “The serious issue behind our call to toast election success with a Patriotic Pint is the need for the next Parliament to get behind Britain’s thriving independent brewing sector. Three successive duty cuts under the current coalition have been a major boost to Britain’s brewers, and that support needs to continue.
“Beer is our national drink, and for every job created in brewing, a further 18 are created in pubs, and another three in supply industries such as agriculture. Many PPCs have already pledged their support for the Manifesto for British Beer, and we hope many more will do so before May 7.
“With 800 brewers now within SIBA’s membership, most PPCs will have at least one in their constituency, meaning we can put any who want to have a Patriotic Pint on standby at the count on 7 May in touch with a local brewer who will be happy to supply it.”
SIBA’s Manifesto for British Beers asks for PPCs’ support in four areas: backing local brewers, supporting community pubs; making beer tax work and maintaining and extending Small Breweries’ Relief, the tax relief for smaller brewers which has helped the sector to thrive.
Notes to editors
SIBA was founded in 1980 by 20 pioneering microbrewers. Today, it has more than 800 brewer members, the majority of them classed as ‘micro’ or ‘local’ brewers. SIBA’s growing credibility and campaigning success – particularly achieving the introduction of Small Breweries’ Relief in 2002, and its role in the scrapping of the beer duty escalator in 2013 and consecutive cuts in beer duty in 2013, 2014 and 2015 – have established it as one of the most authoritative bodies in the brewing industry.
Issued by: Society of Independent Brewers
Further information: Tony Jerome, director of communications & membership