Irish pub owners frustrated as the cost of a pint of Guinness rises by 12 cents

The increase in the cost of a pint of Guinness has been met with frustration by Irish pub owners.

Multinational drinks maker Diageo said a pint of draft Guinness is set to rise by 12 cents a pint excluding VAT from February 1.

The Vintners’ Federation of Ireland (VFI) said this was “more bad news” for pubs, particularly amid rising energy costs and inflation.

It said restaurateurs “will most likely have to pass the price increase on to their customers,” and urged Diageo to reconsider.

The Taoiseach said in response that companies should apply for an energy backup system to cover the increased costs and ease the pressure on them.

The news comes after Heineken announced ahead of Christmas that it is increasing the cost of its beer, resulting in an estimated 25 cents a pint increase later this year.

VFI chief executive Paul Clancy said restaurateurs are “under fire from all sides right now” and that the news from Diageo “is another blow to retail”.

“We’re heading for the quietest months of the year for trading, so the pint price hike couldn’t have come at a worse time,” he said.

“Due to the unprecedented cost of doing business, innkeepers are having to pass this price increase on to their customers, which they are very unhappy about.

“It is well documented that energy costs are at an all-time high while at the same time trade visitors lose the 9% VAT rate in hospitality at the end of February.

“The trade cannot take these hits on what appears to be an almost weekly basis. The VFI is asking Diageo to reconsider its decision given the pressure on pub trading,” said Mr Clancy.

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar said earlier at government buildings that the 12-cent hike alone would not put pubs at risk but would exacerbate the cost-of-living crisis as it could cause “financial difficulties”.

“I think pubs are a very important part of our economy and a very important part of our tourism,” he said, adding that it was a “very important part of our social fabric”.

“I don’t think a 12 cent increase in itself will put a pub out of business but I suspect that combined with the rising costs will cause many to struggle financially.”

Mr Varadkar encouraged people to apply for the Temporary Business Energy Support Scheme (TBESS), which passes 40% of energy bills on to eligible businesses whose energy bills have increased by at least 50%.

“But we have a system designed to help with energy costs. One thing that surprised us as a government is that so far not many companies have actually applied, it’s only thousands, we thought it would be tens of thousands.

“Companies may have been very busy over the Christmas period and haven’t had a chance to make a claim yet.

“I would encourage them to apply – it will be backdated to September which will help with energy bills and obviously we have to see by the end of February if we need to extend that and we will apply closer to that decision.” Time.” Irish pub owners frustrated as the cost of a pint of Guinness rises by 12 cents

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