Our local MP Robert Courts visits OWC HQ

Earlier this month Robert Courts, MP for Witney & West Oxfordshire, visited our Standlake HQ. He met with OWC Owner & Chairman Ted Sandbach and Managing Director John Chapman at John’s invitation, to discuss some of the key political issues which are impacting the independent wine retailing sector. Here’s what John had to say about the meeting:

I asked him to discuss the implications of the change in duty policy that is scheduled to change in 2025 and will result massive increases in duty on a bottle of wine coupled with an extraordinary amount of unnecessary administration resulting in huge costs to the SME businesses in our sector and how this would affect jobs, trading, and freedom of choice to the consumer.  As the local MP for The Oxford Wine Company I wanted him to represent our interests in parliament by writing to the treasury to put the case for the temporary “Duty Easement” that is currently in place to be made permanent. This would offset the impending increase in Duty especially as last year we saw a 15% increase in tax which is already well ahead of inflation and the tax increases seen in other sectors.

 I also raised the issues of post-Brexit labelling burdens we face as a result of the legal stance changing regarding food safety regulations.

 Lastly, I highlighted that now we are no longer part of the EU we shouldn’t be shackled by the draconian laws limiting the vessel sizes that are allowed to contain alcohol. Surely it would be a benefit to society top allow smaller sized wine bottles to promote lesser consumption. This should be raised as a question in parliament to enact a course of action to review these laws and reform them for the better.