Daily Star's “Wet January” campaign is a huge success as drinks sales are up by almost a quarter this month.
Pubs and bars bucked a feared Dry January downturn with beverage takings a whopping 24% higher than the same period last year.
Figures for the week to January 7 – the latest period for which statistics are available – also reveal sales are 2% ahead of the same seven days in 2020, before the covid pandemic hit.
READ MORE: Join the Daily Star in backing Wet January to save our pubs
The Drinks Recovery Tracker from CGA by NielsenIQ found sales of spirits and cider rose 9% and 7%, respectively, compared to 12 months ago.
Soft drink sales increased by 38%, while beer only dipped by 1% in comparison to the first week of 2022.
Pro-pub campaigners will welcome the news that Dry January is not hammering our already struggling inns.
CGA chief Jonathan Jones said: “Year-on-year sales growth was relatively easy against Covid-hit comparatives but it’s still a pleasing start to 2023.”
Meanwhile, official figures show the UK may be dodging recession thanks to the great British boozer.
A boost in pub sales during the World Cup saw the economy grow unexpectedly at the end of last year.
The Office for National Statistics said GDP rose by 0.1% in November, with the largest contribution coming from the food and beverage sector, which jumped 2.2%.
UKHospitality chief exec Kate Nicholls said: “This once again shows the power of big sporting events, even in the winter, and the important role our venues play in bringing communities together.
“While times are challenging right now, with the right support and investment, the sector can both survive and thrive, delivering long-term economic growth, creating jobs and continuing its tradition of investing in our communities.”
It comes amid industry fears increasing numbers of pubs are having to close for days on end to avoid permanent Last Orders as high energy bills destroy incomes.
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