Scottish Courage is axing a raft of well-known brands because it admits they are no longer wanted by consumers.

Hofmeister lager is one of the high profile casualties of a brand review that will also see McEwan’s, Kestrel and Courage Light disappear. The brewer said Kestrel Super and McEwan’s Export would remain in the line up, although it warned that more brands could face the chop as it pledged to “continually review” its portfolio over the next 12 months.

Keith Hogg, MD at Scottish Courage Brands, said: “All these brands have great heritage but six power brands now represent 50% of the UK market and there is still confusion in stores.

“We are getting rid of some of the brands that have had their day and are clogging up the fixture. We hope other brewers will follow our lead and take a long hard look at what they are selling.”

The brewer said the cull would also enable it to give greater focus to the brands it recently acquired from Bulmers, including Strongbow. Hogg added: “We have a significant challenge to reverse value decline and attract new consumers to the market. We already have the leading brand in the market with Strongbow but don’t be surprised if we start getting active in the niche cider market.”

He confirmed that San Miguel was also a priority that would be developed in a similar way to Beck’s to maintain its “better than premium” positioning.