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What effects, if any, will the imminent introduction of MUP have on homebrewing supplies?

  • 22-12-2021 3:57pm
    Registered Users Posts: 17,797 ✭✭✭✭

    What effects, if any, do ye reckon the introduction of minimum alcohol pricing in a few weeks might have on the availability and affordability of home brewing supplies? I can see two potential consequences for our hobby off the top of my head, one positive and one negative:

    Positive: With the low-shelf options favoured primarily by young, broke folks becoming prohibitively expensive for the kind of usage for which they are generally bought, I could easily see supermarkets and/or off licenses stocking some home brewing kits and ingredients as an alternative. So that if you already have your equipment, we may reach a point at which you can just walk into your local O'Briens or Tesco and pick up your favourite kit, malt extract, etc in place of your €1 cans of Tuborg or Tenants or whatever. This could make it a lot easier and quicker for folks to get ingredients, as there are so few bricks and mortar shops which stock them and obviously ordering online carries shipping costs etc.

    Negative: Conversely, we already saw how the explosion in popularity of making things at home during the first lockdown in 2020 brought quite a bit of upward pressure on prices. Combined with Brexit and current inflation issues, a surge in demand could considerably increase the price of low-end kits (UKBrew and MasterPint kits are already up €3 or so (from ~€12 to ~€15) compared with the end of 2019, same for Bulldog premium kits (from ~€26 to ~€32 in some cases) - could MUP lead to a natural supply and demand type inflation which will see our favourite kits becoming significantly more expensive over the coming couple of years?

    Or, alternatively, will the introduction of MUP have no real impact whatsoever on the availability and cost of home brewing supplies?


  • Moderators, Recreation & Hobbies Moderators Posts: 11,748 Mod ✭✭✭✭BeerNut

    Every time the law on alcohol changes, somebody predicts that home brewing will suddenly become popular. It never happens, and I doubt it will this time either.

    In general, homebrewers don't do it in order to get beer cheaply. Anyone who starts for that reason is unlikely to continue unless they actually enjoy the process.

  • Registered Users Posts: 15,235 ✭✭✭✭Supercell

    Beer is pretty complicated to home brew compared to wine and cider so you could be right about that. Wine kits on amazon are about 30 euro for a kit that makes 30 bottles, hard to argue with the economics of that with MUP, time will tell i suppose.

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