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Evan Evans Slams ‘Poor’ Welsh Brewers


Welsh brewer Evan-Evans has hit out at the growing mass of small Welsh brewers producing “poorly-constructed beers” with “tonsil cleansing bitterness”.

While announcing a 60% rise in sales for the first two months of 2010 on last year, Evan Evans chief executive Simon Buckley said the industry was in a fragile state despite the Society of Independent Brewers revealing that local brewers had recorded an average 17% lift in turnover.

“There is little doubt that the small brewing sector is seeing a renaissance, but the market is very fragile, and I believe that were it not for the fact that the larger brewers cannot produce what the consumer is looking for, the market would, realistically, be in decline,” he said.

“There are too many small brewers in Wales – many breweries being built as part of an agricultural diversification programme, where Welsh Assembly funds are invested in projects where the potential brewer has no experience and has no benchmark or quality threshold.

“The consumer wants well-made beers, that have the hallmarks of quality about them, and not poorly-constructed beers that have tonsil cleansing bitterness, and a passing wish to quality control.”

Future of the pub

Buckley said the West Wales brewer, based in Llandeilo, was already brewing at peak levels, usually only seen in the summer with its Cwrw ale now achieving sales growth of 20% per month year.

He also warned that the very future of the pub was under threat from the Government.

“I believe that the very best will survive, but the long term future for our over-taxed, over-bureaucratised industry is in the hands of the government and the budget,” he said.

“Our national treasure, the Great British pub, is now under threat from so many different directions that if we are not careful we will lose once and for all the very thing that so many tourists come to see and enjoy.

“Our great British pub is the envy of the world. Let’s see the government support the brewing sector like they have supported the banks, and build on the renaissance of Welsh-brewed real ale.”

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Wednesday, January 24, 1:34 am

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