Brits facing beer drought with shortage of bottles and spiralling costs

The world's precarious economic situation looks set to deny Brits easy access to bottles of booze, suppliers have warned.

Leading Scottish wholesaler Dunns Food and Drinks predicts global supplies will dwindle as the price of glass bottles jumps by 80% while German beer experts have warned of a glass bottle shortage due to rising production costs.

Unfortunately smaller breweries are expected to be the most affected, with Edinburgh-based Vault City Brewery switching to can-only releases from June to keep costs down.

Julie Dunn, operations director of Blantyre-based Dunns Food and Drinks, one of Scotland’s largest wholesalers has said the UK could see bottled beer stocks plummet.

Speaking today (May 23), she said: “It won’t be long before the glassware shortage hits UK consumers. Our wine and spirits suppliers from around the globe are facing ongoing struggles that will have a knock-on effect.

"As a result, there could be less variety in the bottled beers we see on UK shelves.

“Specialist bottles and glassware hold a very important place in the heritage of the beer industry and I expect that while some breweries will convert to cans to ensure consistent supply, others will look at this as devaluing the brand, so will inevitably pass the additional cost onto beer drinkers.

“We sell a huge amount of beer from Germany, so I would expect us to feel a fairly seismic hit in the very near future.

"However, Dunns will always endeavour to source the best possible range it can."

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Beer remains the most popular choice of alcoholic drink in the UK, accounting for more than £7.1billion pounds of spend in 2020.

In 2017, more than 53% of all beer sales happened off-trade – an increase of over 20% since the year 2000 – marking a shift towards people choosing to drink beer at home, than in hospitality venues.

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