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HMRC internal manual

Beer Guidance

Spoilt beer: Ascertainment of the amount of duty

Provided the spoilt beer is returned in, or destroyed from, the same containers in which it left registered premises and the containers have not been broached, the claim can be based on documentary evidence showing the quantity and strength on which duty was charged.

If the claim includes containers that have been partially emptied, the actual volume must be measured.

Where duty was originally charged on a quantity less than the nominal quantity to take account of sediment in cask conditioned beer, the quantity returned should be adjusted accordingly. The full amount that was relieved of duty as undrinkable sediment should be deducted from the quantity returned as spoilt.

Where beer is returned in a different container to that in which it was delivered, the strength shall be taken as the lesser of the actual strength or the strength on which duty was charged.

The relevant regulations are 28(2) and (3) of the Beer Regulations 1993.