The amount of tax we pay on our wines and spirits in this country is one of those things that I'm always subconsciously aware of but never really took the time to look into. Almost a nagging feeling you get from time to time such as "could we get our gas and electricity cheaper" or "I wonder how many months ago my MOT expired". I've not until recently take the time to really understand the problem. Ironically it really does make you feel like you need a good drink....
Clearly it's becoming an issue which is entering the public's consciousness and this will be helped enormously by the campaign titled "Call Time On Duty" who seem intent on bringing it to people's attention and, crucially, actually doing something about it. You can visit their website at: http://www.calltimeonduty.com / - with a bit of support from the right people within the drinks industry and a fair wind there's a good chance they could do something about it. Essentially, it's time to end the alcohol "super tax" for once and for all.
There are many articles about the shocking state of wines and spirit tax in this country and it doesn't make sense for me to write another one but the points below do make for slightly chilling reason if you're a fan of your wines and spirits:
* In the UK you pay 57% tax on a bottle of wine. 57%!!! Yet in France it's just 20%. How on earth can popping over the Channel cause a 37% jump in tax?
* UK alcohol prices are 43% higher than the EU average
* The UK pays 40% of all alcohol tax paid in the EU. How on earth can our little island be paying 40% of all the tax paid in the entire EU?!
* The situation is even worse with spirits where good old George Osborne takes 79% of the average priced bottle of spirits as tax
The problem is something of an unknown one for many people who have probably become accustomed to hearing the Chancellor smugly declare that there will be no change to the tax on alcohol each budget day. Unfortunately what he's actually saying is that there will be no change to the ludicrous situation which began in 2008 and sees alcohol tax rise by inflation plus 2% each year. It really is time for people to take the time to understand the problem.
The Call Time On Duty is just what is needed to allow people an easy way to register and show their displeasure. Their website allows you to register and to send a standard letter to your MP ( http://action.calltimeonduty.com /). Please do take the time to stop this ridiculous alcohol super tax.
If you'd like to read more about this issue from much more reputable writers than me I thoroughly recommend the article written by Gavin Quinney of the excellent Chateau Bauduc in Bordeaux which shows exactly where your bottle goes on a bottle of wine in the UK ( http://blog.bauduc.com/2012/11/29/where-the-money-goes-on-a-bottle-of-wine-in-the-uk/ ) and the article by Susie Barrie of Saturday Kitchen fame ( http://susieandpeter.com/call-time-on-duty /)
Either way, visit the website at http://www.calltimeonduty.com / and lend your support. It'll make you feel all warm and fuzzy to be doing such a good deed.....