World’s smallest protest looks to end 300 year-old licensing law

World’s smallest protest looks to end 300 year-old licensing law

Maverick brewery, BrewDog lobbies for the introduction of smaller measure in UK pubs with dwarf protest. The campaign for the 2/3 pint!

We have instigated the world’s smallest protest in an attempt to tear-up UK licensing laws that say beer can only be served in third, half or full pint measures. A dwarf is holding a weeklong protest at Westminster, arguing that two thirds of a pint measures should be introduced in British bars and pubs. Despite being recommended by The National Weights and Measures Laboratory (NWML) in 2008, plans to introduce the new measure have been on hold since the general election and BrewDog intends to reignite the debate.

With this protest we hope to prove that size does not dictate significance; our tiny protest can blow the dust off our archaic licensing laws and introduce the first change to draft beer measures for 300 years. Two thirds of a pint is the perfect size for artisanal beers and will help to combat irresponsible drinking as well as introduce new audiences to the craft beer revolution.


Protest at Westminster

BrewDog’s demonstration in Westminster today consists of one  dwarf with placards carrying slogans such as ‘size matters’ and ‘small for all’. The protester will also be showcasing a two-thirds of a pint glass to the general public and seeking signatories for a petition the brewer intends to send to David Cameron at the end of November.

The suggested benefits of a new beer measure include:

-       Fewer units for drinkers choosing higher ABV beers, which many craft beers are

-       A more sophisticated drinking experience based on quality rather than quantity

-       More choice for drinkers – half pints are often deemed too small, and pints too large by many

-       A more attractive measure for female audiences who are often put off by the scale of a pint glass

‘Perceptions of beer are the problem, not the ABV’


BrewDog has faced criticism in the past for brewing high alcohol beers such as Tokyo (18% ABV) and Tactical Nuclear Penguin (32% ABV), although the brewery insists it is the perceptions of beer drinking in the UK that encourage irresponsible drinking, not the alcohol content of craft ales:

We want to challenge people’s perceptions of beer and elevate its status in UK culture. We feel that full flavour craft beers should be enjoyed in smaller measures to allow drinkers to savour the taste, flavour and character. The concept of chugging eight pints of fizzy, tasteless lager and ticking Saturday night of the to-do list is nothing short of disgusting, It is ironic that we want to do something that encourages responsible consumption yet outmoded licensing laws make it illegal.

We want to challenge the beer industry in the same way punk music challenged popular culture in the 1970s and 1980s. We see the weights and measures legislation as a significant barrier to the growing popularity of craft beers in the British on trade.

And if all else fails? We'll just have ours served in a stoat, thanks.


Posted in - brewdog-news


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    chad T darwin19.11.2010
  • I loved having the choice of beer sizes when I lived in Oz; between a schooner, midi, pint and pot (depending on what state you're in).
    Bring it on I say!
  • this is just getting silly now guys, surely being able to sell bottles works for the (absurdly) proposed female market. loving the beer and the bar and the ideals but stunts like this, which are little more than trumped up photo shoots, are wasting time and money?
    bored now30.10.2010
  • Strange battle to pick. Is there such a big difference between half a pint and 2/3 of a pint? There must be more important issues in the beer world than what, 90ml?
    Richard Wilson29.10.2010
  • dont want the facts etc etc etc but there are some very nice pubs in edinburgh and london that are happy to serve 3 thirds of whatever beer you fancy...........triple tipples all round
    phil dalgleish29.10.2010
  • Excellent Idea. Its actually a very nice size of glass to drink a ber from and the few places that have glasswear to accomidate such things, make it feel far more engaging that having the most efficiently shaped vessel to hold liquid. Theres no reason why beer cannot be regarded as an epic product and any negativity to this is essentially saying you dont like progressing the beer indusrty.
  • Dave, you're giving Daves a bad name (on this blog anyway).

    I say pints all the way. As for the comment about women, all the women i know can drink pints quite happily. The pint of Paradox i had earlier this year was highly memorable (if i could remember).
    Dave (Not that Dave, a different Dave)28.10.2010
  • I think your all missing the point, This is publicity, not a protest. I,m not in the UK but I can bet my bottom dollar this will have made the news.
  • I always prefer to have a good micro or craft brew, but I don't really see the point of the argument. I agree that even here in the States where we have dry counties and blue laws, some things need to change. Most places here we can have a pint, a pitcher or a double-shot sized sampler. There seems to be a lot of variation in glass and pitcher sizes here as well, so maybe that's part of the appeal. I doubt there are any laws regarding serving size here, so I'd say make an attempt at dissolving the law entirely and let the establishment (and by turn it's patrons) decide on what serving sizes be made available.
  • Is it lost on anyone that this is outright hilarious?!
  • Nice job boys. You are the Michael O'Leary of the beer industry. More power to you and to your woodland creatures.
  • Also a pint is not "too much". What the fuck is wrong with you people? 330ml is finished before you even realise you've started - a pint gives you a much better run.
  • Dave, you're a dick. Go and swill some Fosters
  • sell it in bottles. that way you can sell it at any size you want. problem solved.
  • But then, what should we expect from a brewery that expects £35 for a 330ml bottle of anything. Make drinking safer by changing attitudes, not making it unattainably expensive.
  • "A more attractive measure for female audiences who are often put off by the scale of a pint glass"

    This is just downright offensive.

    Licensing laws need to change, but the more important issue is the fact that they favour conglomerates and breweries over independent venues. I have seen so many pubs shut down because they cannot keep fighting with stifling prices from breweries, competition from chains, ridiculous taxes, and stupid fines and required local council licenses.
  • I can only see this being used to scam the customer. At the moment weights and measures are strictly controlled in an attempt to ensure that the consumer gets a fair deal. I'd rather see a campaign to have all glasses marked with a line showing their volume. Although that wouldn't be incompatible with allowing retailers to use different sized glasses, at least people could be sure that they were getting what they paid for and were not being short-measured.
    Mike F28.10.2010
  • I think it'd just be better if we swtiched from 20oz UK pints to the 16oz pints America has. Smaller sizes for bigger beers!
  • @Dave. Try harder mate. If they were being greedy and blah blah blah they would sell it in a half pint which they can already do.

    I'll be honest that I'm a cynic and this is a nice bit of marketing for Brewdog but it also helps to push the craft beer market too (as opposed to the real ale market).

    There are many reasons for pushing this and from a beer snob pov I can see that some beers are meant to be served in a 2/3 pint volume. This law can prevent such a beer being served for what is really no good reason.
    Graham Cowie28.10.2010
  • Yeah, that's about the right amount for a new strong-ish beer - a pint might be too much but a half isn't always enough. Unless - can we have half-litres instead of two-third pints?
  • Or perhaps just another greedy way for you to profit, by selling in smaller measures for the same price and calling it "craft beer"
  • I like this, you should be able to serve beer in whatever quantity and measurements you want. Why the government should have a say on how business' choose to conduct their business is beyond me.
    Sam Rodwell28.10.2010

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