The UK is seeing a resurgence of small businesses producing authentic, heritage products, and well up the list is beer.

The data comes from Buying British in 2017, a report from GS1 UK, the supply chain standards member organisation with a community of over 31,000 UK businesses.

The report reveals that the British beer brewing sector has grown from just 140 breweries in 1970 to in excess of 1,700, with the UK now having more breweries per capita than any other country.

Other craft drinks are also seeing an upswing in demand. The number of gin distilleries has doubled in six years and sales of the spirit recently surpassed £1bn for the first time.

This increased demand for craft drinks is reflected in the growth of GS1 UK beverage members. And although drinks manufacturers account for a relatively small percentage of overall members — less than 1% of GS1 UK’s total membership — the rate at which they join is increasing significantly. In 2016 they made up 3% of new joiners, swelling their ranks by 41% from 316 to 447 over a 12-month period.


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