UK high street chain Woolworths is launching a Champagne at £5 ($10), the cheapest ever to be sold in the UK.
Worthit! Champagne, produced by Champagne Henry Villois in Epernay, is part of Woolworths’ new value range. It is the first – and for the time being only – alcohol sold by the chain.
The modest price tag puts Worthit! Champagne at less than half the cost of the next cheapest bottles – Tesco’s Pol Aime Champagne and Asda’s own-label Champagne Brut, both of which are priced at £10.74.
Because Woolworths expects the Champagne – a non-vintage blend of 40% Chardonnay, 30% Pinot Noir and 30% Pinot Meunier – to fly off the shelves, it is instituting a ‘one per customer’ policy.
Producer Bruno Mignon of Champagne Mignon, which owns Henry Villois, was reluctant to discuss the price at which the Champagne is sold to the importers, Park Lane Champagne in East Grinstead.
‘The distributor is working at a loss (far lower than the price that we invoice),’ Mignon told decanter.com. ‘How to manage that loss is up to the importer.’
Park Lane Champagne declined to comment, but Woolworths said it has ‘significantly reduced the profit made by Woolworths on each sale’, and expects to balance this by an increase in sales on other more profitable products.
‘At the moment, it’s just a trial,’ a Woolworths spokesperson told decanter.com when questioned as to how much of a loss this represented.
‘We want to encourage people to try it, and see how it sells.’
Written by Maggie Rosen