I need the information for the book on Scottish brewing I’m currently writing. It’s something I often do: buy a book for specific pieces of information. What else can I do if it isn’t available anywhere else?
The book is a series of articles on various related topics, written by well-known academics. The one I was interested in, called “Following the Flag”, was written by Ian Donnachie, author of the seminal “A History of the Brewing Industry in Scotland” (an excellent book, from which I’ve nicked loads of statistics).
This section in “Following the Flag” caught my eye:
"Certainly, compared to the period before 1914, export volumes from the United Kingdom halved during the inter-war years, falling to an average of 290,000 barrels per annum in the years 1924-28 and 270,00 barrels in 1934-38. Although there is no corroborative data Scottish brewers probably continued to account for about a quarter of the total in the immediate post-war years."
"The Dynamics of the international Brewing industry since 1800" edited by Richard George Wilson and Terence Richard Gourvish, 1998, page 130.
It’s the final sentence that made me feel all weird. Because although Donnachie might not have the corroborative data, but I do. Or just about. Because, in addition to beer exported the figures also include other beer exempt from duty. The last column give the real figures for exports, which you can see are 10-20% less than the UK total for all types of duty free beer.
Scotland wasn’t responsible for 25% of UK exports between the wars. It was more like 50%. In some years, such as 1927 and 1928, even more than that.
|Beer Exported on Drawback and Free of Duty|
|England and Wales||Scotland||Ireland||United Kingdom||UK exports|
|Brewers' Journal 1919, page 65.|
|Brewers' Journal 1922, page 71.|
|Brewers' Journal 1925, page 83.|
|Brewers' Journal 1928, page 87.|
|Brewers' Journal 1934, page 162.|
|Brewers' Almanack 1928, p. 115|
|Brewers' Almanack 1955, p. 57|
Weird that I should have more data than the academics.