Published: Wed, June 13, 2018
Money | By Ralph Mccoy

Wetherspoon to stop selling champagne ahead of Brexit

Wetherspoon to stop selling champagne ahead of Brexit

Wetherspoon will be selling more drinks from the United Kingdom and non-EU manufacturers in the run up to Brexit, the popular pub chain has announced.

Wetherspoon's is to stop selling French Champagne and German beer in favour of alternatives from non-EU nations ahead of Brexit.

The changes - which will come in from July 9 - will also see sparkling wine from Australia replace French champagne.

French champagne will be replaced with other sparkling wines from the United Kingdom and Australia and more British wheat beers will be sold.

Wetherspoon chairman Tim Martin has been a strong supporter of Brexit and says the move is to broaden its range for its two million weekly customers.

Others were quick to point out that Martin's statement made no mention of Prosecco, which is routinely advertised in the pub's food and drink offers and is more widely drunk across the United Kingdom than any other sparkling wine.

Martin accused the EU customs union of being a "protectionist system" which is "widely misunderstood".

Its UK wheat beers will include Blue Moon Belgian White, Thornbridge Versa Weisse Beer and SA Brains Atlantic White.

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He said that he intends to find a replacement for prosecco from the United Kingdom or new world countries which include Argentina, Australia, Chile, New Zealand, South Africa and the US.

'However, we are starting to make the transition to non-EU trade now'.

Wetherspoons said it will offer more drinks from the United Kingdom and non-EU producers and brewers across all 880 pubs from July 9.

It is switching from a range of drinks including Champagne and wheat beers, which are produced in France and Germany, with sparkling wines from the United Kingdom, such as Denbies Sparkling Whitedowns Brut and Whitedowns Rose Brut, and British wheat beers, such as Blue Moon Belgian White and SA Brains Atlantic White.

'We intend to honour existing contracts with European Union suppliers, some of which have several years to run.

Mr Martin urged Mrs May to leave the single market and customs union next March and abolish import taxes on non-EU products, which would "immediately reduce prices in pubs and shops across the country".

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

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