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Sunderland’s Maxim Brewery in final of Sainsbury’s battle of the beers

Managing director of the Maxim Brewery, Mark Anderson with Rob Fraser from Sainsbury's. The supermarket chain is now selling some of the brewery's beers in stores nationwide.

Managing director of the Maxim Brewery, Mark Anderson with Rob Fraser from Sainsbury's. The supermarket chain is now selling some of the brewery's beers in stores nationwide.

MAXIM needs you.

The race is on for the Wearside brewery to secure a money-spinning slot on the shelves of supermarket giant Sainsbury.

The Rainton Bridge-based Maxim has two brews through to the final of the retail giant Great British Beer Hunt, with a guaranteed space in hundreds of stores nationwide up for grabs.

With sales of bottled ales in supermarkets growing by 13.7 per cent in the last year, the company says the chance of a place on Sainsbury’s national retail listing proved a major attraction.

The company’s customers and beer connoisseurs judged more than 150 beers from 70 breweries nationwide as part of the competition.

The 156 brews were broken down into four regional shortlists of five ales each, and Maxim made the northern region list twice, with its 5.2 per cent strength American Pride and 4.2 per cent strength Swedish Blonde beers.

The ales will be on sale nationwide for the next three weeks, after which the best-selling three from each region will go into a grand final.

A panel of experts will then select two overall winners to receive a guaranteed minimum six-month listing in Sainsbury’s 300-plus stores.

Brewery boss Mark Anderson visited its Silksworth Lane store to make sure the Maxim brews were off to a flying start.

The firm had done well to have two beers in the competition, he said.

“It has taken a lot of hard work to get this far, a lot of effort, but it has shown that we can do it.

“And the reward is a place on the shelves of all of Sainsbury’s stores nationwide for a minimum of six months, so it is very good business if we can win,” said Mark.

“The competition runs from now until October 2, and then on October 4 we have to go to London.”

Maxim was set up by Mark and colleagues from Vaux to rescue the Wearside brewery’s beers when it closed, as well as those of its Sheffield sister brewery, Ward’s.

As well as American Pride and Swedish Blonde, it produces Samson, Double Maxim and Lambton’s.

 

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