I am constantly being asked what the impact of Brexit has been on our business. Like most businesses during this time we have seen a vast increase of bureaucracy and a not insignificant increase in cost.

Shipping from the continent is now not nearly as simple as it was before 31st December 2020. The manifestation of this is the EX1 document which accompanies the goods from the EU port of exit, normally Calais, to the UK port of entry. 'Just a document' you say. Well, yes, but one that costs the producers about £65 each shipment to prepare. If that were the end of it, then we could probably just absorb that and move on, but we have also seen added costs for customs clearance which is another £75 each time. Added to this are the delays. It used to take roughly 2 weeks for a shipment to arrive at our warehouse, this is now taking 5+ weeks, plus all the additional stock holding costs associated with having longer lead times.

At the end of the day, none of this is insurmountable and we will carry on the best we can without having to bump up prices. We are starting to buy in larger quantities to mitigate all these costs and we will continue to buy direct where we can.

Come July we will have to stare down the barrel of the VI-1 form: another level of bureaucracy. This is a totally unnecessary document which will require producers to have laboratory analysis for each wine that they export. Fine if you have 1M bottles, but will prove expensive for the smaller guys, like the ones we specialise in.

We will continue on as normal and keep bringing you these fantastic wines