In Ireland, Heineken increases wholesale prices of draft beers to pub owners

Heineken Ireland will sell kegs of draft beers at a substantially higher price starting December, which could lead to an price increase of about 25 cents per pint for the customer.

Beers on tap in an Irish pub

Heineken Ireland announced to pub owners a substantial price increase on all of the draft portfolio of the Danish brewing company.

Starting December 1, the delivery of Heineken kegs will cost an equivalent of 17 cents more per pint, which accounts for almost 21 cents including the 23-percent value added tax for alcohol in Ireland.

In a letter sent to the publicans on November 10, Heineken justifies the rise by “exceptional inflationary challenges” with “unprecedented cost increases across the entire supply chain.”

Prices will increase for all draft beers of Heineken’s portfolio, which also includes Coors, Moretti, Fosters, Lagunitas, and draft cider brands like Orchard Thieves.

In a statement of Heineken Ireland to several Irish media including The Independent, a spokesperson said the cost of energy, packaging and raw materials “left the company no choice but to amend its pricing in the Irish on-trade market”. It accounts for a 9 percent increase to the current wholesale draft prices of Heineken brand. Heineken has recently increased prices in the United Kingdom by 6 percent, too.

Extremely unhappy with the new price few weeks before the festive season, publicans expect a pint will cost at least 25 cents more to customers to maintain a part of their margins.

In a country that has among the highest prices of the European Union, Ireland last January introduced set a minimum price on alcohol, leading to increases for customers. But pub owners were not much affected by the change which targeted more convenient stores and supermarkets.

Consumer prices rose by 9.2 percent over 12 months to October 2022, the thirteen month in a row where the annual inflation is higher than five percent, according to the Ireland Central Statistics Office. In the latest price index, a pint of draught lager at the bar cost 5.56 euros (5,72 dollars) to customers on average.

In light of this steep and unexpected increase, Irish media report several pub owners decided to reduce the number of Heineken brands or advise customers to change ale in a country where Irish people drink an amount of alcohol equivalent to a pint of beer a day on average.

Several protests are being organized in Ireland against the rising living costs.

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