How do beer prices vary across different pubs? An empirical study

Ekaterina Shakina, Ignazio Cabras*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)
19 Downloads (Pure)


This paper aims to investigate the impact of pubs and breweries’ attributes on beer prices by exploring and examining the variation of beer prices across pubs in York, UK.

Data gathered from five surveys of pubs conducted between 2012 and 2020 are used to test six research hypotheses analysing how factors such as location, type of ownership and management of pubs, beers’ characteristics and breweries’ attributes affect beer prices in the on-licence market.

Beer packaging, type of brewery, pubs’ ownership and management all have a significant impact on beer prices, with beer on average cheaper in premises owned by pub companies and breweries compared to independently owned pubs.

Research limitations/implications
Findings can have implications in the first instance, on current fiscal policies affecting beer prices and, on a broader scale, regulating alcohol consumption.

Practical implications
Understanding beer price mechanisms in the pub sector offers valuable insights to practitioners and policymakers about designing and delivering policies and actions aimed at halting the decline of pubs in the UK.

Social implications
Findings provide original information relevant for developing initiatives aimed at preventing excessive alcohol consumption in private premises, an issue commonly associated with problems such as alcohol-related diseases, loneliness and antisocial behaviour.

To the best of the authors’ knowledge, this study is the first, providing an empirical analysis of beer price mechanisms within the pub sector at such a granular level; findings have important implications for pubs and on-licence businesses and for local communities and economies.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1984-2003
Number of pages20
JournalInternational Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management
Issue number5
Early online date14 Mar 2022
Publication statusPublished - 4 Apr 2022


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