Majestic WInes is pinning its hopes on a new one-day delivery service in a bid to boost pre-Christmas trading.
Customers will be able to use ‘flexible delivery options’ through click and collect and next-day delivery services.
Majestic, which remains a largely bricks-and-mortar wine retailer, is fighting against the growing influence of discount supermarkets in the sector.
Today it lent its voice to a growing chorus of experts warning of the impact of the fall in the sterling on the cost of wine.
It’ll cost you more: The fall in sterling since Britain’s vote to leave the EU looks set to leave thirsty consumers paying more for a bottle of wine
Majestic’s boss Rowan Gormley, told This is Money: ‘If Sterling takes a sustained fall into next year all retailers will be impacted by the same amount.’
If rising costs faced by importers are passed to consumers, a bottle of wine from the EU will increase by around 29p, compared to 22p for one from outside the EU, The Wine and Spirit Trade Association claims.
Miles Beale, chief Executive of the WSTA, said: ‘We should be under no illusions that wine prices are likely to increase, which in the current climate could lead to a bottle of wine going up by 29p.
‘This is of grave concern to the wine industry and it is vital that Government come out in support of the trade which generates £17.3bn in economic activity.
‘We are just weeks away from the autumn statement. Any increase in duty, on top of the post-Brexit Sterling devaluation, would have dire consequences on Britain’s wine trade.
‘It is not only consumers who will feel the impact of price rises, but also by more than a quarter of a million employees in the world leading UK wine industry.’
Going up: If rising costs faced by importers are passed to consumers, a bottle of wine imported from the EU will increase by around 29p, The Wine and Spirit Trade Association said
Last month, online wine supplier Naked Wines emailed customers saying that from next month the price of half of its wines would rise by about 5 per cent.
In its email to customers, Naked Wines said: ‘The cost of wine has gone up. Back in the good ole [sic] days of early 2016, we lowered our prices when exchange rates were in our favour.
‘Since then the pound has steadily plummeted and duty has gone up (again), meaning the cost of wine has crept up.’
In a bid to win over customers, Majestic, which was forced to issue a profits warning in September, has scrapped its six-bottle minimum online order requirement.
Upping their game: Aldi and Lidl are becoming major players in the supermarket wine scene
Online and high-street based wine retailers are battling against the ever-growing influence of discount supermarket chains like Aldi and Lidl.
Earlier this year, Aldi, which has won awards for its keenly priced offerings and regularly features in the recommendations of national newspapers’ wine critics, started selling by the case and offering a click-and-collect delivery service.
No-frills rival Lidl launched its ‘French wine cellar’ collection last month, featuring 42 wines from France’s best-known regions, including Bordeaux and Burgundy.
A spokeswoman for Lidl told This is Money: ‘As a British business with German roots, we are part of a much bigger network with a presence in 29 different markets.
‘Therefore, we’re confident of our strong position as a global, market-leading food retailer that will continue to deliver the best quality products at the lowest grocery prices in the UK for our customers. Wine is no exception to this.’
Across the country, wine has become the nation’s favourite tipple, with 71 per cent or 39 million adults drinking it, the WSTA said.