A Great British Export: Beer

beer kegs ready for export

The UK is the sixth largest exporter of beer in the world and, with exports on the rise, this article looks at what might be expected in the coming years. Britain has a pedigree of beer to be proud of with many processes and types of beer originating in Blighty. It’s clear to see why the UK is a dominating force in exports of Beer. It has been a challenging couple of years for the industry as a ‘perfect storm’ of Coronavirus and Brexit sweeped the nation. These two hot topics have both been part of what feels like a roller-coaster, but what will be next for the brewing industry?

In an industry worth £8.9 Billion to the UK economy, it is fair to say that it is a major part of the country’s economic outlook, even the major politicians are regularly seen on visits to breweries in a show of support for the industry. The last minute Brexit trade deal has however added to an already increasing mountain of paperwork and, since then, breweries have reported delays and missed shipments. It’s unlikely this paper work will dissipate but companies will ultimately find a new normal (excuse the cliche).

Recent Trends In The Brewing Industry

An interesting article by KPMG pointed to innovation as a driver for future growth, with consumers less likely to settle for the middle of the road. Indeed, innovation is key for products to stand out, particularly in the increasing off-licence trading. For the pubs, a continued growth of the craft beer market is emerging. With the cost of a pint increasing, customers aren’t wanting large scale production beers, but instead want to go to the pub and have a more full experience. This has become a driving force in the continued success of craft beers in recent years.

V-Brew have worked hard during the lockdown and have begun creating products with an emphasis on incorporating new technologies, particularly automation and data collection. This is an area of brewing experiencing rapid growth as technologies previously reserved for the larger breweries become affordable for all. This allows small breweries to make more consistent and quality brews.

Looking globally, the UK has to compete with an influx of international craft beers on the export market. Innovation becomes ever apparent when standing out, and the story behind the beer can play an important part. Success stories like Brewdog have earned Britain a reputation for beer. Similar to the British Invasion of music in the 60’s could the same be said of beer? Not quite, but through post-Brexit trade deals doors are starting to open and looking beyond our internal market small to medium sized breweries in the UK could begin to emerge as global players.

The Future

The British Beer Export Strategy shows what the future market could be like if industry and government collaborate. It points out that new previously undeveloped export markets exist with countries in the far east such as China. When it comes to China, it is quickly becoming an increasingly important trading partner with 1,112% growth of beer sales to the country between 2015 and 2017.

So, whilst the clouds caused by Covid-19 move on, the potential for exports in the post-Brexit era is set to boom with new trade partners, technology and innovation all playing their part as we move into the 2020s. If you wish to discuss the future of the British brewing industry in detail with our team or would like to learn a bit about our range of brewing equipment, please do no hesitate to contact our team directly.

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