The true true cost of a bottle of wine


14 June – In response to some of our keen-eyed Purple Pagers, William Boyack of the Wine & Spirit Trade Association has supplied this revised graphic with the message, '‘The WSTA stands corrected. As pointed out by your attentive readers the graph contained an error in that it calculated the VAT on the sale price rather than accounting for it in the cost price, although the duty rates remain unchanged as this is a flat rate. We’ve now amended the graph to account for this error. Thanks to your readers for pointing out and apologies for the mistake.'REVWinetaxpricepoints2014_01

9 June – In response to a question posed on our forum, which has thoroughly puzzled some American members, we reproduce below a graphic just produced by the British wine trade association showing what proportion of the retail price is represented by the duty (the red bit) for different price points from £2.99 to £9.99 a bottle.This takes account of the latest changes in UK duty and shows clearly why it makes sense to spend more on your wine.

Note that the green bit includes not just what was initially paid for the wine, but also packaging, transport and marketing. But it does seem that paying less than £6.99 for a bottle of wine is likely to be deeply unsatisfying for any wine lover, albeit a help to our Chancellor of the Exchequer.