12 December, 2008

Every little helps ...

I read with pleasure Tim Atkin's article (OLN, Nov 28) on the subject of Tesco forcing wine prices down regardless of quality. I am sure this will be a successful strategy for the the multiple and, speaking as an independent wine retailer, that is what I want it to do.

I cannot compete with the supermarkets on price so I don't try, but I beat them hands down on quality, and the more they pursue the strategy of selling only the cheapest wine, the more discerning drinkers will come to my door for something better (and still good value).

Tesco needs millions of customers to survive, I need hundreds. Tesco has far more competition than I do. I wish it well - if it makes life more difficult for Threshers it will make my life easier.

Jonathan Radgick, Rothbury Wines

Townfoot, Rothbury, Northumberland

Bring on the Euro cuts

Among all this credit crunch doom and gloom my beady eyes picked out a reason to be cheerful in the latest issue of OLN.

No, not Darling's hasty U-turn on spirits duty - I for one think the inclusion of RTDs in that appears a bit at odds with the government's stance on responsible drinking really - but the story referring to those (generally rather useless) bods at the European Parliament.

If their recommendations are taken on to halve the limit on personal consumption for booze and fags it looks like business I regularly lose to les supermarchés across the Channel might be mine once again.

It remains to be seen if the UK government will do the right thing, but it seems there is a faint glimmer of hope and in uncertain times like these it's really good to see things might be looking up.

I will be writing to my MP to say if it means an end to all those white vans that stock up in Calais to sell on to customers over here my business will hopefully do much better.

Name supplied


What a corker!

Your cork story gave an interesting twist to the pro-screwcap arguments I seem to hear a lot these days (OLN, Nov 28).

It was refreshing to hear that cork was the only bottle closure with minimum impact on the environment in its manufacture and that, actually, the ecosystem in Portugal is protected thanks to farmers who produce cork.

It certainly goes to show that there are two sides to every story, so thanks for reminding me of that next time a particularly ecologically-minded customer asks me whether plastic, screwcap or cork is best.

Sally Eaves


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Lifting the spirits

I were to sum up alcohol sales over Christmas 2017 in one word, it would be “gin”. At Nielsen, we define the Christmas period as the 12 weeks to December 30 and in that time gin sales were £199.4 million, which means they increased by £55.4 million compared with Christmas 2016. There’s no sign the bubble is about to burst either. Growth at Christmas 2016 was £22.4 million, so gin has increased its value growth nearly two-and-a-half times in a year. The spirit added more value to
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Is blended Scotch overshadowed by single malt in retailers?

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