As the UK/EU negotiations are well underway we thought we’d take a look at some of the press coverage that has taken place so far regarding the potential impacts on the wine industry and what it may mean for us all when buying our wine. When it comes to brexit, there is much debate in media outlets about what has and what hasn’t been agreed and even what agreements there will be on what will or won’t be discussed!
One element of business industry that is likely to be impacted is the UK’s wine trade - an industry that is truly global with wine being produced and consumed in dozens of countries.
According to the WSTA, UK imports of wine amounted to £2.8bn in 2015 with exports at £440m. Of this 55% is traded between EU countries and the UK so one doesn’t have to speculate far to understand that disrupted supply chains at customs, changes in tariffs or procedures at borders and fluctuating exchange rates will in the end have an impact upon both range of wines available to us here in the UK and the price of those wines.
As a result there are concerns over the brexit negotiations as Miles Beales of the WSTA warned “that a breakdown in talks on brexit without agreeing the UK’s future trading relationship or without a transition period would be nothing short of a disaster”. (www.the-buyer.net)
Conversely, that may not be the the full picture and it’s not all doom and gloom as Tim Martin of Wetherspoons pointed out that “we trade with 93% of the world without a free trade agreement”.
Without doubt some, all or none of the above may impact wine in the UK at all pricing levels - just think of the value of en primeur wines that may be priced in euros through to the entry level price bracket where margins will forever be under pressure. A multitude of questions and scenarios exist - all at present with a variety of answers depending upon ones’s perspective. Some example scenarios include:
- Through separate trading arrangements with non-EU countries could we see a broader variety of wines at improved pricing become available in the UK as a result of being outside the EU?
- Could the English wine trade become even stronger as a result?
- Will EU wines be caught in log jams at UK ports resulting in product shortages?
Whatever happens with the outcome of brexit and the trading procedures between the EU and UK when it comes to wine, one must surely consider that a quality wine remains exactly that and we’ll be continuing our strategy at Woodshire Wines to ensure we can make quality wines available to our customers whichever country they originate from.
Uncertainty is a popular word at the moment when it comes to forecasting the impact of brexit so one thing's for sure - at Woodshire Wines we’ll be watching the outcomes unravel whilst enjoying a wonderful glass of our favourite wine!
As you know, here at Woodshire Wines we are passionate about our wines and the great winemakers that make it possible for us all to enjoy them. Please feel free to leave a comment on the blog. Indeed if there is a topic you’d like us to blog about or a particular wine you’d like us to consider adding to our range just let us know.