Real ale made by boutique brewers has at last begun to drive down sales of lager for the first time in half a century reports yesterday’s Observer.
Intriguingly, the Society of Independent Brewers (Siba) reports that while its 420 members enjoyed a combined sales rise of 4 per cent last year, its smallest and boutique-iest brewers saw sales rise by 8.5 per cent. Small is good, smallest is best.
More good news. More young people are supping the Right Stuff. Of 25-34 year olds, the number of those who have tasted real ale rose from 28 per cent to 50 per cent in the period 2008-10. What’s more, the number of women rose from 16 per cent to 32 per cent in the same period.
Says Julian Grocock of Siba: “A lot of our members are professional brewers who have worked for the big brewers and have now set up their own business. They are brewing all sorts of beers … There’s now a huge variety out there.”
You see where I’m coming from?
If the little guys can turn the tables on the big beasts in the brewing trade it gives us hope that the same thing can happen in the funeral industry. (I understand that for the word ‘beasts’ you might like to substitute something stronger.)
Speaking of whom, the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (Sepa) has named the Co-op Funeralcare coffin factory in Scotland as one of that country’s 99 dirtiest polluters. The story comes from the Sunday Herald, which describes the Co-op as “ethically conscious.” Hmph.