There is very little joy in the U.K. lockdown that started Thursday, except that it made for a heck of a Wednesday in the British pubs.
On the eve of non-essential businesses being closed because of spiking coronavirus rates, beer-lovers were flooding many of the U.K.’s 47,000 breweries and the establishments were rewarding them with slashed prices on pints. A pub pint for 95 pence (or $1.28)? Make it two.
It was better for the pubs to serve it all, rather than letting it go to waste as the country faces a month-long lockdown. They would rather see it go down throats than drains, although their profits might have done the latter as well.
“Cask-conditioned beer will not last, so any beer that will not have been sold by the time the pubs are shut will have to be thrown away, simple as that,” pub company Weatherspoons’ spokesman Eddie Gershon told CNBC. “And the logic is we’d be better off selling it than throwing it away.”
In May, the British Beer and Pub Association estimated that 70 million pints of British beer would be poured out because of closures. Gulp. “Never too late to pop in for the last pint before lockdown,” the sign at Young’s in London read on Wednesday.
Some unused beer could be repurposed as fertilizer or animal feed, but the second lockdown might force several businesses to shut down. The shutdown is in response to the U.K. having the third-highest infection rate in Europe to France and Spain.
But the wine will only better later.