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On-trade attitude to women and beer must change

Published:  20 November, 2015

The on-trade needs to recognise that beer is no longer a drink just for men, according to new research conducted by AB InBev.

Some 40% of women over the age of 25 have enjoyed beer in the last month alone.

Beer was a more popular choice than prosecco (36%), cocktails (28%) or gin (19%).

Despite this, 20% of UK women have been served the wrong drink in restaurants and bars because those serving assume that beer must be for a man.

Only 16% of those women corrected the bar staff or waiter. Some 7% took the wrong drink to avoid confrontation.

Women over the age of 25 now make one in six of all beer purchases, the research showed. Around 14% drink beer at least once a week.

The data was revealed at a beer-and-food tasting held by the All-Party Parliamentary Beer Group this week to celebrate women in the beer and pub industry.

The event was hosted by women-in-beer group Dea Latis and the British Beer & Pub Association, and sponsored by Ruth Smeeth MP, whose Stoke-on-Trent constituency includes the Titanic Brewery.

Ros Shiel of Dea Latis said: "The relationship between beer and women in the UK is similar to that of politics and women: progress has been made, but there's still work to do.

"Despite the beer revolution of recent years, beer consumption by women lags behind that of the United States and most European countries."

The event featured an exclusive tutored tasting by Annabel Smith, one of the country's first female beer sommeliers.

Dea Latis was founded in 2010 by a group of women working in the beer and pubs industries and now has more than 200 supporters including brewers, beer tasters, marketeers, licensees, writers and bloggers.

It is named after the Celtic goddess of beer and water.