Tax relief for craft brewers and distillers

Thursday, 3 May 2018

Craft brewers, like the Bargara Brewing Company, will be able to compete with large beverage companies, thanks to changes to the excise rate and the excise refund scheme cap.

Federal Member for Hinkler Keith Pitt has welcomed the changes announced by the Coalition Government today.

“The alcohol excise refund scheme cap will increase from $30,000 a year to $100,000, from 1 July 2019 for all brewers and distillers. This is great for people like Jack Millbank, at Bargara Brewing Company, who I met with earlier this year to discuss this issue,” Mr Pitt said.

“The excise rebate cap for independent regional brewers like Jack, were crippling their business.

“Changes to this, as well as the extension of the concessional draught beer excise rate to smaller kegs, will hopefully mean these craft brewers and distillers remain in the region for many years to come.

“Bargara Brewing Company is both a local success and an export success, with their products exported to China and South Korea,” Mr Pitt said.

Jack Millbank, CEO of Bargara Brewing Company, thanked Mr Pitt for his advocacy in the industry.

“The increase in the excise rebate and equalisation of tax in smaller containers make a huge difference to our business. I am sure this would not have been possible without his support,” Mr Millbank said.

Background:

Currently, draught beer sold in kegs exceeding 48 litres is taxed at lower rates compared with beer sold in smaller kegs. This is unfair for smaller brewery businesses. Extending the concessional draught beer excise rates to kegs of 8 litres or more will level the playing field for craft brewers, which typically use smaller sized kegs, to distribute their beer to pubs, clubs and restaurants.

There are around 380 craft brewers in Australia located across each State and Territory, employing the equivalent of almost 2,400 people. These brewers are predominantly small businesses and could benefit both from the increase to the excise refund cap and extended access to the concessional draught beer excise rate.

There are also over 100 domestic distillers, supporting around 1,600 jobs that could benefit from the changes.

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