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Winter ales in the spotlight for new Norwich beer festival

Norwich is to host the UK's first national beer festival focusing on winter ales. Credit: Philip Toscano/PA Wire

Organisers of the country's biggest beer festival are to launch their first event focusing on winter ales and it will be held in Norwich.

The Campaign for Real Ale (Camra) announced plans to stage a winter festival in Norwich in February.

Camra, which runs this week's Great British Beer Festival, said pubs across the city will take part.

"A year is far too long for beer drinkers to wait for their next great national festival, so we have decided to launch the Great British Beer Festival Winter in Norwich.

"Festival-goers can expect the same large range of high-quality beers on offer that they would do at the Great British Beer Festival at Olympia, but we will also have the best in winter brews from across the country."

– Martin Ward, Camra

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Presidential approval sees Suffolk beer sale spike

David Cameron and President Xi Jinping held off on the bar snacks. Credit: ITV Anglia.

Sales of Suffolk beer Greene King IPA have rocketed in China after their president was seen sipping a pint of it alongside David Cameron on a recent visit to the UK.

The Prime Minister treated President Xi Jinping to a drink at his local pub in Buckinghamshire last month.

That led to a surge in sales in the far East with some importers reporting that they have now run out of stock.

Greene King who are based in Busy St Edmunds, say they are now looking at increasing their shipments.

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Profits up for Suffolk brewer

Greene King's profits rise by 7% Credit: Press Association

Suffolk based brewer Greene King has announced a 7% rise in pre-tax profits to £82.7 million.

The company, which is based in Bury St Edmunds, has an estate of more than 2,000 pubs, restaurants and hotels and employs 22,000 people. It owns the Loch Fyne, Old English Inns and Hungry Horse chains.

Greene King's premium ale brand Old Speckled Hen saw volume growth of 5.9% against a premium ale market up 1.8% while Greene King IPA, the cask ale brand, achieved volume growth of 2.2%, in a standard ale market down 5%.