The uphill battle for the Australian Craft Beer sector has always been to overcome the ability of the large brewing companies to use their size, money, power and influence to restrict access to tap space in hotels and bars.
Now there is another, even more insidious, battle to fight for that tap space – foreign breweries.
The recent report by the ABC has highlighted that foreign owned breweries, subsidised by their governments, are starting to take over tap space here in Australia to the detriment of local craft beer breweries. And the biggest threat is coming from the USA.
The Australian Real Craft Brewers Association through its chairman David Hollyoak of the Redoak Boutique Beer Cafe in Sydney “has asked the WTO to take action against countries that provide subsidies to microbreweries.”
We support all craft beer around the world, but not where foreign breweries are using the benefit of better tax regimes in their home countries to take over tap space that is still a rarity in Australia.
Perhaps they don’t understand that legislation regarding tied tap space is different here? Perhaps they should be joining the fight for us to break the ability to tie up tap space, then we’ll welcome all global craft beers to our taps.
Until there is a resolution that results in a fair playing field: