The Campaign for Real Ale has blasted the proposed ban on pubs and brewers selling takeaway beer during the impending lockdown in England, details of which were revealed over the weekend.
The Campaign has now written to the Cabinet Office, which is at the heart of the Government’s coordination efforts to tackle COVID, to demand the removal of the unfair restriction.
In the letter, concerns are raised that the ban for hospitality venues is unprecedented, unexplained, and will only benefit supermarkets and off-sales retailers at the expense of community pubs and local brewers.
CAMRA National Chairman Nik Antona said:
“Offering alcohol for takeaway was a lifeline for many pubs, and particularly breweries, during the first lockdown in England. It is a baffling and damaging decision to remove this option, particularly when other businesses such as supermarkets can continue to sell takeaway alcohol.
“Pubs and breweries were already reporting losses and the risk of closure before Christmas, and this will only add to the risk of permanent closures within the next few months. CAMRA and the entire pub and brewery industry are now urging the Government to reverse this bizarre decision and ensure the survival of our pubs and breweries.
“We are encouraging all concerned consumers to write to their MP and request the scrapping of the takeaway sales ban to give pubs and brewers in England a better chance of surviving the lockdown. This also needs to be accompanied with a sector-specific support package to avoid permanent closures, otherwise the damage to communities across the country will be irreparable.”