If only six per cent of what kids drank out-of-home last year was specific kids soft drink brands, we need to offer more choice for kids in pubs

Generally, I try to bring a cool analytical eye to my witterings on this page, rather than an account of my own experiences drinking in pubs.

Not that there's anything wrong with people writing about that but:



a) I'm a London media wanker, so my experiences bear little resemblance to what's happening everywhere else and

b) because I'm inherently quite boring.


On this occasion, however, I am going to bend my own rules and talk about being a parent and a pub-goer.

As you have gathered I love pubs and as a family we go a lot – for a game of Uno or two; for a Sunday roast when we can't be bothered to cook; with other families; to swap our library books (you can do that in our local. It's immense). We love it...and yet there's a problem.

As typical modern parents we try to limit the amount of sugar in The Kid's diet (she's six for reference) – we may have been dragged up on lemonade and sherbet dippers, but modern kids should be so lucky.

In pubs we are faced with buying her very sugary drinks on the one hand and water on the other. She gets water. From the tap – think of the lost profits from us alone?!

And it's not just us – the recent Britvic Soft Drinks Report reveals that only six per cent of what kids drank out-of-home last year was specific kids soft drink brands – yet 40 per cent were drinking water.

That suggests to me that we haven't got it right when it comes to kids' drinks.

Not only do we not have kid-friendly lower sugar options, there's no trade up brands and it's a one size fits all approach for children aged anything from two to 12.

The opportunity is there and, according to Britvic estimates, every one per cent increase in kids' consumption of drinks out-of-home equates to an extra £3.3m a year to the on-trade.

Even The Kid can see a gap in the market that big.