Cask drinkers spend more than most customers and help pubs grow their trade.

The good news was released in the Cask Ale Report, launched to coincide with Cask Ale Week.

However, it was tempered slightly by views from publicans suggesting they see little room to manoeuvre when it comes to the price of a pint.

According to the stats, most real ale drinkers come to the pub without any budget in mind and spend just over £1,000 on food and drink in pubs throughout the course of the year. That's 30 per cent more than the average pub-goer.

Cask drinkers also go to the pub more than most – 42 per cent go at least once a week.

 

 

However, only 14 per cent of freetraders think there is any opportunity to increase cask prices.

Cask Marque chief and report creator Paul Nunny said: "Licensees may be overly cautious in their attitudes to pricing.

"The research shows 69 per cent of real ale drinkers to be in the more affluent ABC1 demographic. It also shows that cask ale drinkers will pay up to 20 per cent more for a quality product."

 

 

He pointed to the higher prices punters are willing to pay for craft keg as an indicator that pubs could charge more for cask.

"Beer drinkers are frequently paying more than 50p extra for a pint of craft keg beer.

"The opportunity is clearly there to close the pricing gap. Just a 20p increase per pint for a pub selling 100 barrels of cask ale a year would mean an additional £5,000 income," he added.

The report also suggests cask is great for the economy with each job in brewing creating 18 in pub pus others in agriculture, shops and the supply chain.