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Friday, 19 December 2014

Cash aids brewer’s push for exports

A CASH injection has helped a fledgling brewery break into the crucial export market.

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DAVE BAILEY

50 per cent of the beer produced by Millom-based Hardknott Brewery, has been exported so far this year and the latest shipments are bound for Barcelona, with further shipments earmarked for Italy.

Dave Bailey, who runs the Devonshire Road brewery with partner Ann Wedgwood, said £42,000 in grant funding from the Rural Development Fund for England has helped drive the firm’s overseas success.

Earlier this month, the company enjoyed national exposure when prime minister David Cameron sampled their latest beer Azimuth at Cumbria Day, an event held promoting Cumbrian produce in parliament, and it turns out the prime minister isn’t the only person to be developing a taste for Hardknott’s beers.

Mr Bailey said: “Our exports are picking up quite a lot. Close to 50 per cent of our volume in January has gone out to Spain and Italy.

“I’ve received Tweets from drinkers saying I’m enjoying Hardknott in Milan and all over the place.”

Among the company’s most popular brews for export is Continuum, a popular session ale.

The beginnings of the company’s exports were the result of hard work and the help from the Rural Development Fund for England.

The £42,000 helped install new tanks and a bottling machine at the plant, that helped increase the number of beers bottled from 200 to 800 per hour.

“Without the funding we wouldn’t have been able to achieve this growth,” said Mr Bailey.

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