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UK consumers cut wine spending

UK wine drinkers are cutting the amount they spend on a bottle, with price now the most important factor in buying wine, according to a new survey.

A WineIntelligence poll of 1,000 wine drinkers found that the number of people willing to spend £5–£6 on a bottle of wine had dropped by 5% in the past three months.

There has been a corresponding increase in those paying less than £5 for a bottle.

Pubs and restaurants have also registered a downturn in sales of more expensive wines. According to the survey, customers are buying more and more wines under £12 – again, there was a corresponding drop in the higher price levels.

The study, commissioned by the Wine & Spirits Trade Association (WSTA), also found that grape variety had been overtaken by price promotions as the most important factor for consumers in choosing wines.

Jeremy Beadles, chief executive of the WSTA, said the impending economic crisis was to blame.

‘These figures testify to the harsh reality facing millions of consumers with budgets squeezed and increasing pressure to reduce spending where possible,’ he said.

There was good news for high-profile brands, with more than 70% of consumers saying they would consider buying them in restaurants and bars.

Written by Emmanuel Kenning and Oliver Styles

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