The number of new microbreweries rose by almost a quarter last year, highlighting the increasing popularity of craft beer. Britain now has 361 new independent brewers in 2014/15 tax year, up from 291 in 2013/2014, research from the accounting firm UHY Hacker Young has shown. The 24 per cent growth far outstrips the 8 per cent rise seen the year before.
The number of applications to open microbreweries has nearly trebled over the last five years, thanks in part to tax breaks introduced in 2002. 30 new breweries for craft beer were set up in London alone in 2014.
James Simmonds, a partner at UHY Hacker Young, said: “This dynamic sector of the drinks industry is booming as new start-up breweries are attracted by the growing consumer appetite for their products. Craft beer is viewed as an aspirational leisure accessory – so the profit margins available can be very attractive. The recent success of small brewers across the UK also offers encouragement to budding entrepreneurs and investors.”