Stella Artois brewer raises prices

Inbev UK has reviewed its wholesale pricing because of what it describes as large cost increases, including steep rises in energy, packaging and transport bills.

The average price increase will be 3.3%, effective on draught and packaged products from Sept 15, 2008.

Stuart MacFarlane, president of Inbev UK & Ireland, said: “We have made every effort to absorb rising costs but the sheer size of increases we have faced in recent months, and the fact that we are seeing further rises across virtually every element of our business, means that we now reluctantly have to pass on some of these increases to customers.

“We are committed to being as efficient a producer as possible in terms of our operating overheads and will continue to focus on cutting costs across the business. We are at the same time continuing to invest heavily in our leading portfolio of brands.

“However, the fact remains that the brewing process is a very heavy user of energy so rises have an immediate impact on the price of producing a pint – particularly so given the scale of the increases we have had to cope with this year. I cannot remember a time when so many major cost increases have come through so consistently across virtually every aspect of our business.”