Celebration of British beer returns with links to new campaign

SIBA BeerX 2015 launch

BeerX, the Society of Independent Brewers’ celebration of British beer, is returning next March, linking up with a campaign to reignite the nation’s love of beer.

The event’s bar will be sponsored by There’s A Beer For That, the industry-wide marketing campaign launched in October to highlight the quality, diversity and versatility of beer.

The 30-metre bar will dispense 250 beers brewed by SIBA members, each one a winner from one of the organisation’s 10 regional competitions for cask, bottled and craft beers in keg.

Finalist beers will be judged at BeerX in Sheffield before being served to the trade and consumer visitors throughout the event which runs from March 18 to 21.

BeerX, returning to iceSheffield, is set to attract brewers of all sizes, as well as licensees, retailers, suppliers, politicians and beer drinkers, showcasing the best of British beer and brewing.

In addition to the National Beer Competition judging and announcement, BeerX also includes SIBA’s Business Awards and speeches from key industry figures on Industry Day, Thursday 19 March. Two speakers already confirmed are Bob Pease, chief executive of the American Brewers Association, and Katherine Smart, the group chief brewer at SAB Miller, with further names to follow.

The trade exhibition will feature more than 200 suppliers to the brewing industry while a Festival of Beer will offer live music and Six Nations rugby alongside the award-winning beers.

SIBA managing director Mike Benner said: “BeerX is an unrivalled opportunity to present all that is great about British beer to an audience who are eager to find out more about it, whether by sampling some of the fine beers from SIBA members, listening to speeches and seminars from leading figures in the brewing industry or visiting the trade exhibition.

“BeerX plays a crucial role in achieving SIBA’s vision to build the future of British beer and we are looking forward to welcoming our guests to this bigger and better event next March.”

There’s A Beer For That is funded by five global brewers – ABInBev, Carlsberg, Heineken, Molson Coors, SAB Miller – and supported by Britain’s Beer Alliance, a broad coalition of over 30 brewers, pub companies and industry bodies including SIBA, Cask Marque, BBPA, Fuller’s, Shepherd Neame, Enterprise Inns and many others.

The campaign includes TV advertising showing how different styles of beer can be enjoyed on a wide range of occasions, by a wide range of consumers and matched to a variety of foods. There is also a range of digital and social media programmes including #BeerMatch, which advises on food and beer pairing via Twitter, and #BeerClub which educates people on different beer styles via social media.

David Cunningham, programme director for the campaign, said: “We are pleased to be supporting such a great event like BeerX in 2015. SIBA`s members produce an impressive array of quality beers that combine the best of British brewing tradition with ground-breaking innovation.

“Events like BeerX celebrate many of the fabulous beers that are brewed in the UK, making this a natural partnership.”

Mike Benner added: “The campaign’s goal of promoting beer’s quality, diversity and versatility is one that SIBA not only shares but lives and breathes every day: last year, our 800 brewers produced some 10,000 beers embracing a broad range of styles and tastes, which will be represented at BeerX.

“There’s A Beer For That provides a new and powerful platform to take British beer to a wider audience. SIBA was one of the founding members of Britain’s Beer Alliance, the group of brewers, pub operators and wider industry supporting the campaign, and the BeerX sponsorship cements our partnership.”

Tickets to attend BeerX will be on sale from January via the SIBA website.

Pictured, left to right: SIBA managing director Mike Benner and commercial director Nick Stafford with Emma France, business tourism manager at Marketing Sheffield, plus members of the SIBA team

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