The Government needs to act to save thousands of jobs in the supply chain from farm to pub, according to a new initiative from the British Beer & Pub Association (BBPA) and the National Farmers Union (NFU). Grain to Glass is a joint scheme set up to highlight the importance of the beer-supply chain to Britain’s rural economy. It has called on the Government to support pubs as a vital part of the tourism infrastructure and is seeking a review of the impact of red tape. It wants planners and local authorities to recognise the importance of the pub as the hub of rural communities. The BBPA and NFU also want a review of the structure and impact of beer duty on the rural economy. A report unveiled to launch the scheme says around 270,000 rural jobs in Britain depend on brewing and pubs, and more than £3.5bn is paid in rural wages. BBPA chairman Ralph Findlay said: “As a brewer, and as a company running British pubs, I know how vital the beer-supply chain is to the UK economy. Beer is a British product made from natural ingredients, and pubs are at the heart of local life. It’s a great British industry of which we are proud. “The need for economic growth is now top of the political agenda, and rightly so. The right policy and regulatory framework can help us create much-needed jobs in rural areas. The tax on beer is a particular issue that must be addressed by the Government, but a new approach on a wide range of issues is needed.” The group plans to lobby the Government and MPs over the issue and has plans for future initiatives to promote the rural economy.

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