Clarity on "below cost" selling regulation relative to cider

05/06/2014

Clarity on "below cost" selling regulation relative to cider

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With a ban now in place across England and Wales on alcohol being sold ‘below cost’ the National Association of Cider Makers (NACM) has moved to remind retailers, licensing authorities and Trading Standards of the duty definitions that apply to cider.

The new regulations mean that it is illegal for any business with a Premises Licence to sell alcohol below cost or the ‘permitted price’ as identified in the legislation.

The ‘permitted price’ is defined as duty plus the VAT on that duty.

Specifically in relation to cider it is important to remember that different duty rates apply to products that people (both retailers and consumers) regard as ‘cider’ in terms of a general description.

Hence, whilst most cider, including pear cider, falls under a particular duty regime, a very small proportion of products are identified as ‘sparkling cider’. This definition can give rise to confusion, yet is reserved for products packaged in a bottle with a ‘mushroom-shaped’ stopper secured by a tie or fastening, and often with considerable carbonation (in excess of three bars).

In addition, ‘flavoured ciders’ where fruit juices or flavours are added are regarded as ‘made wine’ for duty purposes and it is the duty rate relative to that category that applies for the calculation of the ‘permitted price’.

We detail below some guidelines for cider.

 

The Home Office have issued guidance and a ‘calculator’ at the following link:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/banning-the-sale-of-alcohol-below-the-cost-of-duty-plus-vat

 

Product Size of Pack ABV (%)  Permitted Price
Cider 500ml 5.0% e.g. Crumpton Oaks / Strongbow 24p
  500ml 7.5% e.g. Frosty Jack's 24p
  500ml 8.4% e.g. K Cider 36p
  2 Ltr 5.0% e.g. Crumpton Oaks / Strongbow 95p
  3 Ltr 7.5% e.g. Frosty Jack's £1.43
Flavoured Cider 500ml 4.0% e.g. Kingstone Press Wild Berry 50p

 


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