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Chancellor’s wine hikes to go live at midnight

Published:  01 February, 2019

The wine industry is being warned to prepare for today’s rise in duty, which will push up a bottle of still wine by 7p to £2.23 overnight.

Things look different this morning for much of the UK with snow covering the ground everywhere from Cornwall to Carluke.

But another change is in store for wine businesses, which are facing a 3.1% inflationary rise when a planned increase for excise duty kicks in.

The duty rises, announced by Chancellor Phillip Hammond at the Autumn Budget mean that as of midnight tonight (February, 1) a bottle of wine will go up by 7p, sparkling wine 9p and an average priced bottle of fortified wine will also go up 9p.

This does not include VAT which would add a further 20% to the wine duty rise.

“This comes at a particularly bad time for the UK wine industry – the threat of a no-deal Brexit is still on the table with the Government continuing to refuse to rule out leaving the EU without a deal on 29 March,” Miles Beale, chief executive of the Wine and Spirit Trade Association, said. “If this happens and the UK does leave without a deal, tariffs on wine from the EU will apply, meaning wine prices will rise by 20p per bottle for still wine and 37p for sparkling wine.”

Currently, an average priced bottle of still wine costs £5.73.

If the UK crashes out of the EU without a deal tariffs on EU wines alongside the duty increase would add an extra 20p to the price of a bottle, the WSTA said.

Based on volumes of wine sales last year from today UK consumers of wine and sparkling wine will collectively be hit with an extra £90 million bill.