Brexit hits the drinks list at pub chain Wetherspoon

Lloyd Doyle
June 13, 2018

JD Wetherspoon will stop serving Champagne and German beer in the run up to Brexit, and will instead focus on drinks from the United Kingdom, it announced on Wednesday.

Tim Martin, who founded Wetherspoons and campaigned for Brexit, said the chain was "starting to make the transition to non-EU trade" ahead of Britain's expected exit date of 29 March 2019.

Alcohol-free Adnams Ghost Ship will replace Erdinger alcohol free beer from Germany.

Martin is skewing his pubs' ordering of drinks away from European Union sources, because it's cheaper to buy them from outside the European Union and British beers and wines can be purchased without paying the tariffs imposed by the EU's "protectionist system".

Mr Martin claimed the move would help Wetherspoons "broaden our horizons", hitting out at the EU's "protectionist" customs union.

"It is the start of a review all products in the next six to 24 months, with the object of making our business more competitive".

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".

"Tariffs are imposed on wine from Australia, New Zealand and the United States, and also on coffee, oranges, rice and more than 12,000 other products", he said.

Instead of French fizz, Wetherspoon will sell brut and rosé sparkling wines made by Denbies winery in Dorking, Surrey, as well as Hardys' sparkling Pinot Chardonnay from Australia.

Among the UK-brewed beers to get a stocking boost are Blue Moon Belgian White, Thornbridge Versa Weisse Beer and SA Brains Atlantic White.

Wetherspoon will continue to serve Kopparberg cider from Sweden, which recently confirmed it will produce its cider in the United Kingdom post-brexit.

Nigel Farage, former UKIP leader and the public face of Leave.EU, praised Martin's decision ahead of what some are calling the United Kingdom economy's anticipated "Brexit Boom" as a result of retailers turning more to home-grown products.

Wetherspoon's will continue to serve Kopparberg cider from Sweden. A "no-deal" alternative would leave the United Kingdom much better off than it is today'. He said each of the 650 parliamentary constituencies would receive around £60million.

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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