More than two-thirds of beer and wine served in UK pubs and bars are being short-measured, a survey has revealed, costing punters more than £100 a year.

There's nothing better than sitting back in your favourite bar or pub and enjoying a pint or a glass of wine with friends and family. 

But I'm sure we can agree it can be extremely frustrating when you get a pint from the barman that has far too much head, or a glass of wine that isn't measured correctly, costing you that little bit of extra liquidy goodness.

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Around 70% of beer and wine in UK pubs short measured costing punters more than £100 a year

Chartered Trading Standards Institute (CTSI), as part of a recent survey, visited 77 pubs and bars across the UK.

From 137 orders they were served 96 short measures, meaning around 70% were less than the prescribed quantity required by The Weights and Measures Order for pints and half pints and 175ml glasses of wine.

Of the short measures, 41 were under by 5% or more (29% of the 137 orders).

Of the beer ordered around 86% was short-measured, while 43% of wine didn't meet the prescribed quantity required.

For the average beer drinker, these short measures equate to a loss of £1.70 per week, or £88.40 a year.

While for wine drinkers in the UK, on average, this jumps up to £2.20 per week or £114.40 per year, the CTSI said.

The findings come at a time when the price of alcoholic drinks is at an all-time high.

The average price of a bottle of red wine has increased by 8% in the last year, while the average cost of a pint of lager is up 5.6%, according to the Office for National Statistics.

The Campaign for Real Ale (CAMRA) national chairman Nik Antona said: “Consumers shouldn’t have to feel short-changed when they support their favourite pubs, social clubs, and taprooms.

"The idea that 70% of all beer bought at the bar is being short-measured in the UK is extremely concerning.

“For anything that is short measured, and particularly anything more than 5% short, you should ask the bar staff for an immediate top-up.

"You are well within your rights to do this, and the staff should comply and fulfil this request."


Calls for pint measurement to not include the head

Legally, the frothy head on a pint of beer is included in the measure.

The CTSI’s survey found that 35% of the public felt the head should not be included in the pint measure and 23% thought it should.

CAMRA agrees that the head should not be included in the pint measure and consumers are entitled to a 100% liquid pint.

Chief executive of the British Beer and Pub Association, Emma McClarkin, said: “Pubs across the country take great pride in serving the amazing range of beer brewed in this country and in no way want to be accused of short-serving the millions of customers who enjoy visiting our nation’s pubs each week.

“Beer is carbonated and is typically sold with a foamy head, although there is a considerable difference between consumer preferences for the head that different beers naturally produce.

“This is reflected in industry guidance which says that the measure of beer served with a head must include a minimum of 95% liquid. Customers who would like less of a head should always feel free to ask for a top-up and should never be refused.”