By Andrew Moore
Irish farmers have hit out at Guinness and say the price of a pint should be reduced by 10% in line with the lower payment they now receive for their grains.
Malting barley farmers were paid €175 a tonne thirty years ago, when the price of a pint was just 40c. Now they receive just €155 per tonne of grain, while the price of a pint will cost at least €4.
In 2012, Diageo, the company that owns Guinness, upped the price of a pint by 5% due to a “very significant increases in raw materials such as barley”.
The Irish Grain Growers Group say their members now make less than half a cent for every pint of Guinness sold.
Chairman Bobby Miller spoke to the Irish Sun. He said: “We are slowly but surely going out of business as a result.
“If we got the equivalent of half a cent a pint it would put malted barley up to €200 a tonne and we would be quite happy. The price of grain is quite insignificant to the retail price.
“In 2012 they increased the price of a pint by five cent and one of the main reasons given was the cost of raw materials was costing more.
“The price of grain did spike that year to €250 a tonne but we didn’t have the same yield that year.
Diageo said they have “no role whatsoever in negotiations regarding the price of malting barley” as they purchase finished malt.
A spokesperson added: “These are a matter for growers and malting companies. Nor does Diageo set the price of a pint in pubs.
“Diageo has always been supportive of Irish farmers and farming in Ireland and will continue to be so.”
Top picture: Rodger Scullion and Bill Heaney enjoying a pint of Guinness with Maire Mullis, owner of Beedi’s Bar in Dungloe, Co Donegal.