Wednesday, 23 January, 2019

Wetherspoons prepares for Brexit by replacing EU-sourced drinks with British brands

Wetherspoons prepares for Brexit by replacing EU-sourced drinks with British brands Wetherspoons prepares for Brexit by replacing EU-sourced drinks with British brands
Nellie Chapman | 16 June, 2018, 08:33

JD Wetherspoon is to ditch French champagne and German wheat beers in favour of United Kingdom and non-EU products in the run-up to Brexit.

The drinks boss said it makes sense to invest in United Kingdom drinks products now because of the EU's "protectionist" tariff systems, which he claims are "widely misunderstood".

The popular pub chain will replace its Champagne and wheat beer offerings with UK-produced sparkling wine and beer brands from 9 July, Wetherspoon's chairman Tim Walker has announced. Grandad's 90th birthday, dad's third wedding, that sort of thing.

He also envisions an "inevitable transfer of trade post-Brexit" to non-EU countries, which he says will reduce prices in shops and pubs.

Martin says the new products will be cheaper than the European Union brands they are replacing. Everyone else: carry on having four cups of coffee with your burger.

Tim Martin, the founder of the JD Wetherspoon chain and a strong advocate for Brexit, said Wednesday that the aim is to make the business more competitive for when Brexit becomes a reality.

Martin has maintained - contrary to industry expert opinion - that Brexit can mean cheaper food for British customers.

'Tariffs are imposed on wine from Australia, New Zealand and the USA, and also on coffee, oranges, rice and more than 12,000 other products.

Wetherspoon will replace Champagne with sparkling wines from the UK; Denbies Sparkling Whitedowns Brut and Whitedowns Rose Brut as well as Hardys Sparkling Pinot Chardonnay from Australia.

Wetherspoon's will continue to serve Kopparberg cider from Sweden.

Germany's Erdinger alcohol free beer will be replaced with alcohol free Adnams Ghost Ship (UK).

Swedish cider Kopparberg makes it past the cull, due to the company's decision to make its cider in United Kingdom after Brexit.

"To maximise the opportunities from Brexit the United Kingdom must follow free trading nations like Australia, New Zealand and Singapore by ending tariffs".

"This will not be possible if we remain in the EU's customs union".

Martin said the chain is likely to make further investment in non-EU products once the United Kingdom reaches its Brexit cut-off date on 29 March, but European beers, wines and spirits won't disappear from the menu altogether, or at least not yet.

"Ending tariffs will also help to minimise border inspections, and will benefit poorer countries in Africa and elsewhere, which are penalised by European Union protectionism".