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Trading standards officers highlight short measures

Trading standards officers in Birmingham have highlighted that in their opinion 9 out of 10 pints they tested in the Birmingham area were in effect short measures. They found that the average pint was 3.94% short which equates to around £400 million in additional revenue (if replicated across the UK) which UK drinkers are paying for drink which they do not receive. Indeed one "pint" was said to be a full 12% short of the legal limit when tests were carried out in pubs and clubs around the area!

While it would be wrong to suggest that the figures from the Birmingham test will be replicated across the country, there is no doubt that many people are concerned about so-called short measures. When you consider that the UK pub industry has been in terminal decline for many years, even with an estimated £400 million a year in revenue from short measures, it is difficult to see where further cost savings can be made to boost revenue and profitability in the medium to longer term.

Indeed we are also hearing noises regarding pub landlords who are up in arms about the cost of beer from their tied-supplies. If the rumours are correct, we can expect to see significant confrontation between the large pub estate companies and pub landlords who have been at loggerheads for some time now.

* Please note that these figures are based on a very small sample of 88 pints across 30 pubs and bars in the Birmingham area, carried out by Birmingham Trading Standards Officers.

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