Published: March 20, 2013
Cider makers in Burnham area attack Chancellor's 2p-a-pint tax rise

Cider makers in the Burnham-On-Sea area have reacted with dismay to the Chancellor's Budget announcement that cider duty is to increase by 2p a pint.

Chancellor George Osborne drew cheers from MPs when he said he said beer duty would fall by 1p, however drinkers will still pay an estimated 10p more for a bottle of wine, while a bottle of spirits is up 38p and a pint of cider is up 2p.

John Harris of West Croft Cider in Brent Knoll, pictured, told "Duty on cider has been steadily increasing over recent years and this latest increase is not unexpected, but is unwelcome. At some point the cost has to be passed on to customers, although we will try to avoid this for as long as possible."

And Jan Rich from Rich's Cider Farm in Watchfield, near Highbridge, added: "A small increase in duty was expected, but a 2p a pint rise does make it difficult for small cider producers who have to take it on the chin or pass it on to retailers."

In 2010, we reported here how Cider makers in the Burnham area have welcome the government's decision to drop plans for a 10% tax rise on cider following strong opposition across the West Country.


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