Queensland's booming craft breweries could be forced to close down or push up beer prices after the Palaszczuk Labor Government increased their annual fire levy by almost 900 per cent.
Micro-breweries in Brisbane and regional cities will see their fire charge skyrocket from $527.80 to $5224.20 a year.
LNP Leader Deb Frecklington said Labor's 'beer tax' would damage the fast-growing industry and hit beer drinkers in the pocket.
Shadow Minister for Small Business Fiona Simpson has called on the Palaszczuk Labor Government to dump the tax and support small business breweries.
"Annastacia Palaszczuk has an unquenchable thirst for new taxes," Ms Frecklington said.
"We should be raising a glass to our craft breweries instead of squeezing them dry with outrageous tax increases.
"There is no possible justification for a such a huge increase. This is just another Labor tax grab.
"Craft breweries survive on slender margins. Brewers will have to put up prices or go under.
"This Labor tax grab will push small breweries over the brink."
Ms Simpson said penalising firms for making beer was "unAustralian".
"This tax grab will shatter the dreams of many dedicated craft brewers – as well as pushing up prices for beer lovers," Ms Simpson said.
"Labor must have had their beer goggles on when they dreamt this up."
Previously, craft breweries paid the level 3 fire levy charged to small-scale industrial premises, but the Palaszczuk Labor Government has now ordered them to pay the far higher level 7 levy.
Larger breweries, over 15,000 sqm, will pay $91,168.20.
NB: The new fire levy for breweries under 15,000sqm can be viewed on p28 of the updated Fire and Fire and Emergency Services Regulation. Breweries in built-up areas pay the Class A levy. See: www.legislation.qld.gov.au/view/pdf/inforce/current/sl-2011-0160