How much do you pay for a bottle of wine?

This is a question which has stirred much conversation in the news over the last few weeks. Are the British wine discount junkies? And people who know about wine, are they wine snobs? Mike from Majestic Peterborough reveals the basic facts to how far your money goes on a bottle of wine… How much do you pay for a bottle of wine?

£5? £6? £7? Nope, I’m afraid your wrong, and I’ll tell you why.

Every bottle of wine that is imported into the UK is taxed by HMRC. It is about £2 per bottle (regardless of the value of the wine) and this is just one of the costs involved so lets break it down.

Money via Flickr CJ IsherwoodTake one £5 bottle of wine & minus the £2 import tax, then minus shipping costs, minus bottling, minus insurance, minus wages, minus the cost of growing & harvesting the grapes, minus profit for the winemaker etc etc and you could end up buying only 50p worth of wine after costs. Now this is true of all wines so don’t be put off, however, look at it like this. For every pound extra you spend, you’re getting a large increase in the quality of wine. That £6 bottle of wine on the same basis would mean that rather than 50p worth of wine you’re buying £1.50 worth (that’s 3 times as good)!

Obviously there are a few exceptions to the rule, one-off parcels and special deals aside. So next time you’re at Majestic ask a member of staff to find you a wine that is £1 more expensive than what you’d usually spend and I believe 8 out of 10 times it will be significantly better than your usual. I have done this with several of my customers and so far all I’ve heard is good news!!

Let me know how you get on, tweet me @majesticpeterb or email us on

3 thoughts on “How much do you pay for a bottle of wine?

  1. I am a recent convert to the notion of a flat tax on EVERY product – not just alcohol and tobacco and fuel. Taxing products rather than pay might be a way out of the economic mess we’re in, by encouraging employment rather than mechanisation and quality rather than quantity.

    1. Goes to show you more than double the amount you’re spending on wine by only spending £1 more at the cheapest price points. Would be interesting to see how different tax initiatives could potentially work on every product.

  2. As William James says though, it only really works on the lower price points. The £4.50 (appx.) on every bottle also gets diluted for every £1 extra you spend. So going up from a £19 to a £20 bottle only gets you an increase in wine value of 6.9%, rather than the 200% you would see from trading up from a £5 to a £6 bottle

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