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Eastern European and Portuguese wines on the up as shoppers look to beat Brexit price-hikes

Majestic has reported a 400% increase in sales of wines from Romania, Bulgaria, Hungary and Slovenia since last June as customers try to beat rising wine prices due to duty increases and Brexit related currency fluctuations.

FOOD & DRINK

Eastern European and Portuguese wines on the up as shoppers look to beat Brexit price-hikes

Last month the Wine and Spirit Trade Association said that the average price of a bottle of wine bought in the UK had hit an all-time high of £5.55.

Majestic said Portugal has also seen a bounce in sales, with a red wine called Porta 6 from Lisboa beating off competition from Spain, France and the New World to become Majestic’s most popular.

Other bestsellers include a Krasno Slovenian Sauvignon Blanc which Majestic said has proved popular in the face of price rises from both New Zealand and France.

Richard Weaver, Majestic buying director, said: “If you’d have told me ten years ago that Majestic’s best-selling red wine was Portuguese I’d have laughed you out the building – but the economics post-2016 has changed people’s willingness to test their taste buds beyond our traditional markets.”

The biggest stumbling block for Eastern European and Portuguese wines used to be one of perception. James Reed, buyer at Majestic, said this has now changed, adding: “It’s the quality at different price points of these wines which has really impressed. They’re styles that are recognisable to the British public but very keenly priced for the level of expertise involved.”

Majestic said the need for flexibility in sourcing value wines will be a key challenge for retailers post-Brexit.

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