SIBA responds to Labour and Liberal Democrat Manifestos
Responding to the publication of the Liberal Democrat party manifesto, SIBA Chief Executive James Calder said;
“Any targeted support for the alcohol sector needs to consider the UK’s national drink, beer, and the people who make and serve it. All parties need to commit to fair and positive review of small breweries relief and at least a freeze in all excise duty for the next Parliament.
The evidence for MUP is not yet in, and any party should be careful of the wider impacts of a policy like MUP can have on small businesses, including small brewers. We need to see more detail on how a commercial landowner levy like that proposed by the Liberal Democrats would impact on brewers and pubs.”
Responding to the publication of the Labour party manifesto, SIBA Chief Executive James Calder said;
“The Labour Party commitment to force all producers to put health warnings on their products risks damaging small brewers. Self regulation of the alcohol industry works, and the industry takes reducing alcohol harm seriously. But mandatory health warnings are not needed, have little evidence that they work to reduce harm and will be hugely costly for small brewers to implement.
We welcome the Labour commitment to give pubs that are under threat Asset of Community Value (ACV) status. More community pubs in the hands of those in the local community is good for social cohesion and good for local brewers. We need to see the details of how a land value tax would work to ensure pubs, taprooms and brewers benefit.
The brewing industry would have liked to have seen a commitment in the Labour Party manifesto to reform Small Breweries’ Relief positively, ensuring it continues to allow small independent community based brewers to compete with the global mega-brewers.”
James went on to say “SIBA’s manifesto for the next Parliament will be published in the next few days and will set out a vision for how the next Government can turbocharge UK independent brewing. We will also comment on the Conservative party manifesto when it is released.”
Notes to editors:
- The Liberal Democrats have promised to review UK alcohol duty to better support Scotch whisky exports and shake up business rates with a commercial landowner levy based on land value. The Lib Dems have also committed to introducing minimum unit pricing for England. The Liberal Democrats do not mention excise duty on beer, small breweries relief or pubs in their manifesto.
- The Liberal Democrat Manifesto can be read here: https://d3n8a8pro7vhmx.cloudfront.net/libdems/pages/57307/attachments/original/1574684060/Stop_Brexit_and_Build_a_Brighter_Future.pdf?1574684060
- The Labour Party have committed to force all brewers to clearly label their products with the health risks of consuming them. Under the Labour Party drinks would have to clearly have the alcohol content in units displayed on them, alongside nutritional information, pregnancy warnings, and the Chief Medical Officer’s guidelines. Labour will list all pubs as Assets of Community Value so community groups have the first chance to buy local pubs when they are under threat. The Labour Party do not mention excise duty or Small Breweries Relief in their manifesto. A Labour government would review
the option of a land value tax on commercial landlords as an alternative and develop a retail sector industrial strategy.
- The Labour Party manifesto can be read in full here https://labour.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2019/11/Real-Change-Labour-Manifesto-2019.pdf