Posted on 04 January 2011.
The VAT increase in Britain will push the price of a typical pub pint of beer beyond the three pound barrier for the first time, according to the British Beer & Pub Association, which has called for a halt to further rises in Beer Tax. BBPA chief executive Brigid Simmonds says the 2.5% VAT increase will put over six pence on the price of a pint, and comes on top of a 26% rise in Beer Tax endured in the past two years.
The BBPA points out that the duty and VAT ‘double whammy’ is placing shackles on the pub and hospitality sector at a time when it could be creating jobs, and leading the UK economy out of recession. Instead, the Government should abandon plans for further Beer Tax increases.
The VAT rise will hurt pubs, in which beer is the key seller, far more than other retailers, says the BBPA. As most are small, family-run businesses, they are far less able to absorb tax shocks than the big supermarkets. The move will further encourage drinking at home.
Further Beer Tax rises are in the pipeline. The Government is currently sticking to plans to increase beer duty above inflation in the Budget in March, through its tax ‘escalator’, even though the latest Oxford Economics research for the BBPA shows that rising taxes mean falling revenues and further job losses in the sector as beer sales fall sharply. Inevitably this means many more pub closures. The VAT increase alone is predicted by Oxford Economics to lead to the loss of around 8,800 jobs related to the sale of beer. These further planned duty increases will cost the Treasury £40m in reduced tax revenues, and lead to another 10,000 job losses.
The BBPA says the Government should also consider a lower rate of VAT in the hospitality trade, amidst growing evidence that similar moves across Europe are proving a winner when it comes to creating jobs and boosting tax revenues.
Posted in News
Posted on 25 November 2010.
New guiding principles on country of origin labelling to provide British consumers with clear, accurate information on the origin of their food have been published. The guidance, titled ‘Principles on Country of Origin Information’, has been developed by retailers’ organisation, the British Retail Consortium (BRC), in association with representatives of food manufacturers, commercial caterers and the hospitality trade.
Based on the labelling practices of the best performers in the food chain, it aims to bring others into line to ensure a higher quality and consistency of origin – information everywhere that consumers buy food.
The Principles apply to meat, processed meat products (sausages, bacon, ham etc) and milk, fresh cream, cheese and butter. They have been devised to ensure that the term ‘British’ can only be used for meat from animals born and reared in the UK, and dairy products made from milk produced here. Many British grocers already use this approach to origin labelling, with the overwhelming majority committed to going one step further, providing country of origin information on the meat in all ‘composite’ products – such as soups and ready meals.
“This guidance formalises an approach to country of origin labelling which Britain’s large retailers have already agreed. In fact, many grocers already go well beyond the high minimum standards set out in the document,” points out Andrew Opie, food director of British Retail Consortium. “We have taken leadership on this issue because we believe it’s important that all elements of the supply chain, from food processors and restaurants, right through to the catering firms working for Government and councils, give consumers the information they need to make informed decisions. Supermarkets are making it easy for those shoppers who want to buy British to do so. Other food service providers need to up their game.”
Posted in News