InBev mulls closures and prices amidst brewer woes

By Neil Merrett

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Brewing, Inbev

Recently formed brewing powerhouse Anheuser-Busch InBev is already having to take difficult decisions in its European operations as it mulls price increases and brewery closures to offset industry-wide financial concerns.

The company, which was formed last year when the Belgium-based multinational acquired the brewer of the Budweiser brand, is reportedly set to push up the prices for its beer in Belgium by 3.5 per cent, says the Reuters news agency.

The reports come the same week that the company announced possibly it was considering closing a UK brewery as part of a wider national shake up of its operations. Anheuser-Busch InBev said it hoped the review would allow it to better merge both businesses together, while offsetting higher costs facing the brewing industry as a result of beer taxation and commodity and energy prices.

Consultation process

A spokesperson for the company said that following on from the merger of Anheuser-Busch and InBev it had therefore decided to start a formal consultation on restructuring in the UK, which could lead to possible job loses and plant closures. The brewer said that one of the options up for consideration would involve potentially closing its Stag brewery in Mortlake, England.

A spokesperson for InBev told BeverageDaily.com that no decision had yet to be made by the group regarding the restructuring and production of theBudweiser, Bud Ice and Michelob brands​will continue at the site until further notice.

The company said that it would continue to invest in its brands, though had been forced to consider possible cuts to ensure long-term competitiveness in its operations.

“The current economic environment and already declining beer market, under further pressure from higher burden tax increases, has meant that we need to review and propose any changes now,” stated the spokesperson.

Anheuser-Busch InBev said it would remain in full consultation with its employees throughout the process.

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