Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

How They're Adding Froth to Campaign for Real Ale

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

How They're Adding Froth to Campaign for Real Ale

Article excerpt

Byline: KEITH POOLE

THERE are sure to be dark mutterings into pints of bitter the length and breadth of the country this week. Real ale, a drink usually associated with big bellies, beards and sandals, is getting an image makeover.

The flat-capped, whippet-loving archetype who props up the bar of his local is out. In come attractive young men and women - naked apart from some strategically placed hops - as brewers go for a younger market.

The target group at this year's Great British Beer Festival, at Olympia this week, will not be the veteran supper of Bishop's Finger or Fox's Nob, but people aged between 25 and 35 - females included - who, it is hoped, will leave the event hankering after another full-bodied Hobgoblin.

Event organiser, the Campaign for Real Ale (Camra), wants to re-brand real ale as a stylish drink, the thing to be seen clutching at the bar. Louise Ashworth of Camra said: "In the past it has been marketed more towards older people and the emphasis has very much been on the traditional British way of life. Perhaps that does not appeal to young people. Faced with declining real ale sales as a share of the total UK beer market, we are fighting back."

Camra has gone for a more shocking approach in its Ask if it's a Cask campaign. The posters of a man and woman, clad only in hops, go up on the walls of pubs across the country, with the slogan 100 per cent NATURale.

"We feel women have been rather neglected in the past," said Mrs Ashworth.

"The campaign is not offensive. They are quite beautiful pictures and something both men and women would not mind looking at. It is certainly noticeable.

"So far it has had a very positive response.

Some of the brewers we have spoken to have been really impressed."

The models in the poster campaign have yet to develop the belly that bears testament to years of devoted ale consumption. …

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