The brewer reported a 9.8 per cent rise in volume sales in the off-trade with particularly good performances from 500ml bottles of Spitfire and Bishop’s Finger.
Volume sales in the on-trade grew 18.6 per cent despite “challenging market conditions.”
Chairman Miles Templeman said: “Trading performance since the year end is satisfactory, despite poor summer weather, the smoking ban and pressure on the consumer from interest rate rises. Although we face continuing external regulatory pressure concerning alcohol environmental and social responsibility, I have great confidence in our ability to grow in the future.”
Chief executive Jonathan Neame said the company had “out-performed” national market trends for beer sales and attributed the growth to consumers’ increasing interest in local and traditional products and to the fact that its pubs had adapted to the smoking ban by offering more food.