Brits warned of sober summer as brewers strike with Bud and Stella Artois hit

Beer-lovers face going “thirsty this summer” after unions confirmed brewery workers will go on strike next month.

The GMB Union has announced a series of walkouts at Budweiser’s main factory – where Bud, Stella Artois, Becks and Boddingtons are all brewed – over pay.

It comes as Brits prepare to toast a packed calendar of sporting events and music festivals.

GMB organiser Stephen Boden said: “The last thing these workers want to do is jeopardise beer supplies just as the hot weather kicks in. But they’ve been pushed into this by bosses essentially slashing their wages during a cost-of-living crisis.

“Anyone fancying a pint of Budweiser, Stella Artois, Becks, Boddingtons or Export Pale Ale could go thirsty this summer.”

More than 200 staff at the beer giant’s Samlesbury site, near Preston, are set to cripple production by downing tools on two days a week from June 6.

They have rejected a final pay increase offer of 3% for both 2022 and 2023.

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Union chiefs say the proposal “amounts to a massive pay cut in real terms” because of the cost-of-living crisis and rampaging 11.1% inflation.

Budweiser Brewing Group is hoping for a “mutually acceptable” solution, with a spokesman adding: “The teams have plans in place to minimise the impact on customers and supply.”

The battle could drive up the cost of beer throughout the UK in another devastating blow to Brits amid the cost of living crisis.

One of Britain's largest pub chains recently announced a hike in their prices by as much as 45p – which will see some areas pay £4 per pint for the first time.

Marston’s Brewery, which owns six breweries and operates more than 1,500 pubs, is introducing rises of between 20p and 45p.

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