According to the 2017/18 Cask Report, real ale keeps pubs open and helps them grow their trade. People who drink real ale spend £1,030 a year on food and drink in pubs. This is 30% more than average pub-goers and 6.5% up on two years ago. Cask ale drinkers are the most frequent users of pubs, with two in five (42%) visiting once a week or more – and they bring their friends. However, overall sales of cask beer have fallen by 5% since 2011. The number of barrels of cask ale sold in 2016, was 2,166,000, down from 2,251,000 in 2015. The fall in cask beer sales, is significantly less than the fall in sales of keg beer, which is formed by 25% and lager which has fallen by 11% since 2011.

However cask ales still continue to be the dominant force in sales with a 57% share, compared to keg ales at 43%.

Commenting on the 2017/18 Cask Report, which highlights the role of real ale in pubs, BBPA Chief Executive Brigid Simmonds said:

“A great beer offering is of course vital for any pub. Cask remains extremely important, and has outperformed the beer market as a whole in recent years. Cask customers are very discerning, and they spend more than other drinkers, and go to the pub more often.

“Quality of dispense and good cellar management is an area where you cannot cut corners. The Cask Report is absolutely right to shine a light on these issues, and Cask Marque does great work in this area.”