The latest covid restrictions are yet another huge worry for breweries struggling to survive, says the Society of Independent Brewers (SIBA).
It forecasts the closure of more small breweries in areas affected by the latest lockdowns unless the government can expand support offered to hospitality businesses to small breweries too.
SIBA chief executive, James Calder, said: “Small independent brewers have not received direct support as the rest of the hospitality sector did — such as the business rates holiday, or inclusion in the expanded Job Support Scheme — despite beer being an integral part of every pub in the country and making up 80% of sales for small brewers.
“During the national lockdown, 5 million pints of beer from independent brewers were poured away, with brewers footing the bill and being left thousands of pounds out of pocket.
“If pubs are forced to close, then it is essential that brewers are properly supported, or there may not be any beer on the bar when the pub doors do re-open.”