- Pub group Greene King said like-for-like sales fell 1.8% year-to-date, blaming the tough comparatives of last year's World Cup and good weather.

For the 18 weeks to 1 September 2019, like-for-like sales fell 1.8%, with Pub Company reporting like-for-like sales growth of 1.5% while Pub Partners posting a 4.2% decline in growth for the first 16 weeks, driven by softer beer sales.

In Brewing & Brands, total beer volumes were down 6.5% for the first 18 weeks and own-brewed volumes were down 7.9%.

The company said it was on track with its cost cutting and disposal programme.

'We are on track with our cost mitigation programme and expect to limit net inflation this financial year to £10-20m,' Greene King said. 'We also continue to make progress on our refinancing programme and in June we prepaid the remaining £93m Spirit A4 bonds.'

'We remain on track with our disposal programme and expect to dispose of 85-95 pubs this year, generating disposal proceeds of £45-55m from which we will fund the opening of eight new pubs,' it added.

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