A $20 schooner may soon become commonplace as inflation continues to have a negative impact on bars and brewers prepare for yet another painful tax increase.
This week, a patron snapped a photo of a tavern in Western Australia promoting a local tap brew for $17.20 per pint, which will undoubtedly make beer enthusiasts shudder.
The eye-watering pricing was observed at Common Bar and Kitchen at Perth Airport at a time when beer prices are at record highs nationwide and a new excise tax on beer is slated to hike costs once further in August.
The industry is concerned about growing expenses in Australia, where the beer tax is the fourth-highest in the world, according to John Preston, Chief Executive of the Brewers Association of Australia.
“Inflation affects the cost of a drink at a bottle store or at a bar in the same manner that it affects the cost of all other goods.” Preston told Daily Mail Australia, “What we also see with beer is that the twice-yearly beer tax rises bring additional financial misery to pubs, clubs, and beer drinkers.
‘Australia’s beer tax is the fourth highest in the world and it goes up twice a year.
‘The last increase in February was the largest in over ten years and the next one in August will be even larger.’
As a result, Sydney’s average cost of a schooner increased from $8.10 to $8.50.
However, many bars and pubs are raising their prices significantly, and some inner-city establishments are asking patrons exorbitant prices for a cold one.
Currently, a pint of imported Peroni costs $16 at Customs House Bar at Circular Quay, while a pint of French beer Sans Papiers costs $21 at The Ivy Pool Bar.
However prices drop outside the CBD with the average price of a schooner of VB cheapest in the inner west ($8.40), followed by the western Sydney ($9), eastern suburbs ($10.31) and the CBD ($11.56).
Celebrity publican Stu Laundy, who helps oversee around 60 pubs as part if the Laundy Hotels empire, says his company has absorbed several price rises over the past year.
Laundy told Daily Mail Australia, “We have kept our pricing as low as we could for a while, but inflationary pressure means we will now just have to push up.”
That works out to about 20 cents each schooner. anything inside the band.
We don’t enjoy doing it. But it’s evident that inflation is affecting every aspect of life when lettuce costs $10 per head or whatever.
The Brewers Association is requesting intervention from the Federal Government in an effort to retain beer consumers in establishments ahead of the tax rise in August.
‘The Brewers Association has been calling for Federal Government action on beer tax to ease the cost pressure on pubs and clubs which are being hit hard by Australia’s high beer tax rate, while they are still trying to recover from the impacts of COVID-19,’ Mr Preston said.