Cider Industry Calls on Government for Help
The Drinks Business.
Paul Bartlett, chairman of the National Association of Cider
Makers (NACM), delivered the message to Westminster this week. He
said that a stable regulatory and fiscal regime plus "recognition
of the unique nature of the cider industry" will enable growth in
the UK and especially in export markets.
Bartlett told the audience of ministers, MPs and officals:
"Investment by cider makers over many years means we are better
placed to succeed over the long-term than ever before.
"In order to secure this opportunity we need regulatory
stability, sensible restraint on duty and support in export
markets. If we get this, we will do more for the rural communities
we are part of and make a greater contribution in terms of duty and
Bartlett added that despite "the most challenging period in
living memory" investment has been made in new orchards, production
infrastructure, new products and consumer communication.
He added: "Producers have shown their resilience and tenacity as
well as quality in what has been a very tough year.
"Reduced consumer spending and more pub closures affect every
sector; however the poor weather in the last year has been
exceptional and is especially difficult for cider makers.
"The prospect of drought gave way to endless rain and depleted
the apple crop by around a third. For some growers, conditions in
the autumn were so poor it became a challenge to gather the
Despite the difficult conditions Bartlett added that a number of
cider makers have also invested money to help build their presence
in key markets like North America and Australia.
He said: "In September I suggested to the same audience that
cider, as a British success story, had real potential to develop
and grow multiple major markets overseas.
"That is starting to happen for cider makers of all scales and
we will see significantly more if we can continue to plan and
invest for the long-term because we have stability and restraint in