Alcohol prices to rise from today - with bottle of wine to go up by 44p

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Alcohol prices to rise from today - with bottle of wine to go up by 44p
Alcohol prices to rise from today - with bottle of wine to go up by 44p

Taxes on alcohol will change from today and it means most booze bought is set to become more expensive.

First announced in the Spring Statement, from August 1, alcohol duty rates will rise by 10.1%, in line with the September 2022 inflation figure. The way alcohol will be taxed will also change as from August, a new system will be introduced and will tax alcoholic drinks according to strength.

It means alcohol will be taxed higher the strong they are - so a 40% alcohol by volume (ABV) bottle of whiskey will be taxed more than a 13% ABV bottle of wine. The new system replaces the current Alcohol Duty system, which consists of four separate taxes simply covering beer, cider, spirits, wine and made-wine.

But at the same time, the Goverment has expanded Draught Relief in pubs as part of a new "Brexit Pubs Guarantee". It claims this means tax on draught beer in pubs will be up to 11p lower than tax on supermarket beer.

The new tax system is part the biggest shake up of alcohol duty in 140 years and was announced in 2021 during the then-Chancellor Rishi Sunak's Autumn Budget.

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Between the announcement and the implementation, the Government froze alcohol duties due to the pandemic and the cost of living crisis.

According to the British Beer and Pub Association, ending the alcohol duty freeze will cost the industry around £225million. Industry experts at the Wine and Spirit Trade Association said the changes would particularly impact wine, as the unfreeze and shakeup could see taxes on a 75cl bottle rise by 20%.

Alcohol prices to rise from today - with bottle of wine to go up by 44pThe way alcohol is taxed in the UK will change in August (Getty Images)

This is the largest increase in wine duty since 1975 and could see the price of an average bottle of red or white wine bought in a supermarket rise by around 44p. In a statement to Sky News, Simon Stannard, director of policy at the Wine and Spirit Trade Association said: "Alcohol tax rises will only further fuel inflation.

"It will heap more misery on consumers. And it will damage British business, especially those in the hospitality supply chain, who are still trying to recover from the pandemic."

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Colin Neill, chief executive, Hospitality Ulster, told ITV that said businesses may be forced to raise the prices they charge for alcohol as a result of these changes.

He said: "The immediate future remains challenging, and it is vital that we ensure our valued customers understand the price increases are down to the Government - not hospitality businesses.

"This has left hospitality businesses, who are fighting to break even, no choice but to pass on the significant duty increases to customers. This is heaping misery on customers and will damage hospitality businesses at the same time."

However, drinks purchased in pubs are set to see a price cut from August under the "Brexit pubs Guarantee". The "Draught Relief" will cut alcohol duty by 9.2% for beer and cider and 23% for wines, spirits and other fermented products purchased in pubs.

According to the Chancellor Jeremy Hunt, this will see beer and cider sold in hospitality venues be 11p cheaper than booze sold in supermarkets.

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He said: “British pubs are the beating heart of our communities and as they face rising costs, we’re doing all we can to help them out. Through our Brexit Pubs Guarantee, we’re protecting the price of a pint.

“The changes we’re making to the way we tax alcohol catapults us into the 21st century, reflecting the popularity of low alcohol drinks and boosting growth in the sector by supporting small producers financially.”

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak said: “I want to support the drinks and hospitality industries that are helping to grow the economy, and the consumers who enjoy the end result.

“Not only will today’s changes mean that that the price of your pint in the pub is protected, but it will also benefit thousands of businesses across the country. We have taken advantage of Brexit to simplify the duty system, to reduce the price of a pint, and to back British pubs.”

Alcohol Duty changes from August

  • Port 20% abv 75 cl - Before: £2.98 Now: £4.28 Difference: +£1.30
  • Sherry 15% abv 75cl -Before: £2.23 Now: £3.21 Difference: +97p
  • Vodka 37.5% abv 70cl -Before: £7.54 -Now: £8.31 - Difference: +76p
  • Still Wine 12.5% abv 75cl -Before: £2.23 Now: £2.67 Difference: +44p
  • 440ml can beer 4.5% off trade -Before: 38p Now: 42p Difference: +4p
  • 440 ml can cider 4.5% off trade -Before: 18p Now: 19p Difference: +1p
  • pint cider 4.5% on-trade (draught) -Before: 23p Now: 23p Difference: 0p
  • pint beer 4.5% on trade (draught) -Before: 49p Now: 49p Difference: 0p
  • Spirit-based Cream Liqueur 17% abv 70cl - Before: £3.42 Now: £3.39 Difference: -3p

  • Pre-Mixed G&T 5% abv 250 ml - Before: 36p Now: 31p Difference: -5p

  • Sparkling Wine 12% abv 75cl - Before: £2.86 Now: £2.76 Difference: -19p

Ruby Flanagan

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