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MPs slam foreign beer sponsor for British games

July 6, 2012 2:41 PM

Greg Mulholland MPChair of the All Party Parliamentary Save the Pub Group and Member of Parliament for Leeds North West Greg Mulholland has today tabled a Parliamentary motion expressing his dismay at the Olympic Committee's choice of Heineken, over a UK brewed beer, as the official beer of the London 2012 Olympic Games.

Mulholland, who has campaigned tirelessly on behalf of the UK brewing industry, has expressed his disappointment at the decision to use a European drink as the official beer for the Games, instead of a beer traditionally brewed in the UK.

Mulholland has called on the Government to ensure that any further opportunities to showcase British produce to the rest of the world are not lost to non-British companies purely for financial benefits.

Commenting, Greg said:

"I am extremely disappointed by the Olympic Committee's decision to have Heineken as the official beer for London's Olympic Games. Beer is the UK's national drink and the country has a strong and ancient tradition of brewing; by choosing a mass produced bland foreign lager, the committee has ignored all the wonderful, traditional beers that the UK has to offer and instead gone for the company with the biggest cheque book.

"The Olympic Games is a prime opportunity for Britain to showcase the best of British, including the opportunity to promote its traditional beers and its thriving brewing industry. By opting for Heineken as the official beer, the opportunity has been lost. The decision is completely at odds with the strong positive British identity of the bid and the forthcoming London 2012 Olympics."

The Text of the EDM

That this House Expresses its disappointment that Heineken lager, a mass produced non-British beer, has been chosen as the official beer of the London Olympics 2012, despite beer being the UK's national drink and with the UK being one of the world's leading brewing nations; notes that the 2012 London Olympics are an excellent opportunity for the nation to showcase to the world the 'best of British', which could and should have included a British beer as the official beer of London 2012; further notes that a British brewed beer would be far more appropriate than a Dutch beer for the London Olympic Games; deems this a wholly inappropriate decision based purely on the size of Heineken's cheque book, and totally at odds with the strong emphasis on British character and identity at the heart of both the original bid and the preparations for the forthcoming London Games; and calls on the Government to ensure that any further opportunities to showcase British produce to the rest of the world are not lost to non-British companies purely for financial benefits.