Sprit sales overtake beer sales for the first time, according to latest HMRC figures

06/06/2017 - 08:55
Sales of spirits have overtaken beer sales for the first time, with a 7% increase for the tax year 2016-17, according to latest figures from Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (HMRC).

The sales increase of spirits was largely down to a ‘gin boom’, according to the Wine and Sprits Trade Association (WSTA), with an increase of 12%, the fasted growth rate of any spirit.

Miles Beale, WSTA chief executive, said: “The WSTA dubbed 2016 the year of gin and the gin boom has had a large part to play in the windfall now being enjoyed by the Treasury.

“The 7% increase on the revenue takings came as a result of the chancellor freezing sprit duty in 2016 and allowing the industry to grow and invest.”

According to the WSTA, the treasury earned an additional £225 million from spirit drinkers as well as a contribution of £3.32 billion, which was due to a freeze in beer duty.

The UK’s duty rate, the highest in the EU means consumers pay 25% of all spirit duties collected by EU member states, with 76% of the price of a bottle of gin is taken up in duty and VAT.

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