A message for new MEPs

A message for new MEPs

A message for new MEPs

Europe has spoken. From June 6 to 9, an estimated 51% of eligible voters across the European Union turned up at schools, town halls and other polling stations to elect 720 of you to serve.

Congratulations are in order. The arrival of the new crop is always exciting, offering the prospect of fresh perspectives and renewed work on the challenges facing the EU. As you take your seats in the heart of European democracy, you will embark on a journey of immense responsibility and potential. Your decisions will shape the future of Europe, impacting the lives of millions.

There will, of course, be many issues on your agenda over the next five years. I want to use this opportunity to emphasise the importance of a sector that is a cornerstone of European culture and the economy: the beer industry.

Europe boasts a brewing culture that dates back centuries, with each country contributing its unique flavours, techniques and innovations.

The brewing sector is not just about producing beer. It is also about fostering community: beer brings people together in bars, pubs and events like no other drink. It also drives local economies, supporting over two million jobs, from farmers and brewers to distributors and pub owners. And brewing is about responsibilities: we lead the way in sustainability – and when it comes to responsibility and promoting moderation, notably by informing and empowering our consumers and offering a wide range of low, lower and non-alcohol beers.

All this does not mean we are invulnerable. Rising costs of raw materials, energy, and transportation continue to stretch the industry. Moreover, regulatory pressures and changing consumer preferences demand constant adaptation and innovation.

As newly elected MEPs, you have the power to enact policies that support the brewing industry not only to recover but thrive. Our 2024-2029 Manifesto for a Sustainable Brewing Future lists key areas where your action can make a difference.

These include recognising in policies the intrinsic nature of beer as a lower-alcohol, fermented drink, brewed from nature and that that can spur moderation in consumption. Beer already has a relatively low alcohol content compared to other alcoholic beverages. But we have also gone further and faster in developing even lower and non-alcohol alternatives too. And we have launched and delivered on high-profile commitments to raise awareness about moderation, notably through our Beer Pledge and Proud to be Clear labelling initiative.

We hope that, as policymakers, you can recognise our efforts. And we are looking forward to working with you on partnerships, policies and practices that promote

beer, through progressive tax frameworks, support for research, and investment in developing and promoting lower-alcohol drinks.

The brewing industry is more than just a sector. It is a vibrant community that is part of Europe’s cultural and economic life. By supporting measures that help brewers, you are preserving a crucial part of Europe’s heritage and securing the livelihoods of millions of Europeans.

As you settle into your roles and begin to shape our shared future, your support can ensure that Europe continues to be celebrated for its diverse and rich brewing traditions and leadership for generations to come.

Simon Spillane
Head of Operations

About The Brewers of Europe:

Based in Brussels, The Brewers of Europe brings together national brewers’ associations and companies from 28 European countries to support the united interests of Europe’s 10,000+ breweries. Our vision is to ensure a competitive, responsible and sustainable European brewing sector, creating shared value across the entire value chain and enriching European culture.