Thursday 10 September 2009

Real Ale Premier League - Welsh Division

With the CAMRA Good Beer Guide being launched today, the Campaign for Real Ale have done some number crunching and come up with a list of the most prolific brewing areas in Britain.

Naturally like the Football Premier League, Brew Wales finds little of this of use, as it is mostly dominated by English areas, so after doing some number crunching ourselves we can present the Welsh Real Ale Premier League:

1. Glamorgan with 13 breweries and 1 new brewery
2. West Wales with 9 breweries and 2 new breweries
3. North West Wales with 6 breweries
4. Mid-Wales with 5 breweries and 2 new breweries
5. North East Wales with 5 breweries and 1 new brewery
6. Gwent with 4 breweries
The full list can be seen on the CAMRA website here.
NB These are based on the Good Beer Guide areas, mainly the old historical counties as featured in the Good Beer Guide and not the Unitary Authority areas.
Press Release from CAMRA:

Good Beer Guide 2010 finds real ale brewing industry to be one of the most successful small business sectors in the UK

On the day its flagship publication, the Good Beer Guide, is launched, CAMRA, the Campaign for Real Ale, has today released new findings showing the fastest-growing real ale areas in the UK.

Total beer sales in the beer and pub industry may be at their lowest since the Great Depression, but the Good Beer Guide can happily report that the real ale industry is maintaining its rapid growth, with more brewers in operation than at any time since the Second World War. CAMRA has found that 71 new breweries have started production in the UK in the last 12 months, taking the total to 711 breweries nationwide!

CAMRA has published new findings from the latest Good Beer Guide revealing the most prolific brewing areas* in the land. A comprehensive list can be viewed at, with the top ten as follows:

UK region Number of breweries in 2010 Number of new breweries for 2010
1.West Yorkshire344
4.North Yorkshire284
7.Gtr Manchester250
8.Gloucs and Bristol212

Roger Protz, Good Beer Guide editor, said:

'For the first time since the 19th century, Britain is the undisputed top brewing country in the world. It has over 700 breweries and has more small craft breweries per head of population than all other major industrialised countries; but it also offers tremendous choice.'

'While most other countries offer mainly mainstream lagers, Britain has enormous diversity: milds, bitters, strong ales, porters, stouts, barley wines, old ales, Xmas ales, spring beers, golden ales and harvest ales to name just a few. And some craft brewers are even producing lagers in the true Continental style.'

'This rebirth of British brewing is due to the pioneering work of CAMRA- there are now more than twice as many breweries in Britain than when the campaign was launched in 1971- and to the enthusiasm and innovation of independent brewers.'

In its latest Annual Industry Report, SIBA, The Society of Independent Brewers, revealed that their members had experienced a 7% year on year volume growth throughout 2007 and 2008; a record that is unlikely to be matched by any other sector of small and medium sized businesses. Further to this, new companies brewing through 2008 added a further 3% to year on year volumes, marking a total volume growth of 10%.

As for community pubs, the industry-led Intelligent Choice Report revealed how research from one national pub company showed well-kept beer to be a true indicator of success. Findings showed how pubs that obtained an award from Cask Marque, a quality accreditation body and sponsor of the Good Beer Guide 2010, were experiencing sales growth of 14%, while those without saw a decline of -2.5%.

Protz concluded:

'This is an exciting time for real ale. Craft brewers are growing their sales at a time of economic downturn and falling demand for big beer brands. It's a major success story. And there's more to come: the Good Beer Guide lists 25 new breweries that will come on stream later this year and in 2010.'


* Geographic areas as defined in the Good Beer Guide 2010

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