The Wine and Spirit Trade Association (WSTA) of the UK has submitted a letter to the Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond and environment secretary Michael Gove urging a freeze on wine duty.

The move follows a report announced by the Organisation of Vine and Wine (OIV) informing that global wine production is set to fall by 8.2% this year, which is considered the lowest since 1961.

According to the report, production levels in Western Europe were very low compared to last year, with Italy producing 39.3mhl, while France produced 36.7mhl and Spain manufactured 33.5mhl.

The report revealed a similar situation in the US, South Africa, and Australia.

The UK generates £19.9bn in economic activity and includes around 172,000 direct and 105,000 indirect jobs through its wine industry. The OIV report added to concerns over the planned tax rises for many wine producers in the country.

“Another rise in excise duty would be a burden on UK wine businesses.”

Responding to the report, WSTA CEO Miles Beale commented: “As the biggest per capita importer of wine in an international market, the UK is bound to feel the effects of an increasingly challenging environment. Prices for consumers will inevitably rise.

“UK wine businesses have already had to contend with the sharp devaluation in sterling, rising inflation, and uncertainty following the Brexit vote, which all add costs to companies making wine available to the UK’s 30 million consumers, who have already seen price hikes.

“These factors come on top of the Chancellor’s decision to impose a hefty 3.9% increase in alcohol duties earlier this year, which saw the average priced bottle of wine sold in shops hit £5.58, up 4% on last year.”

It is said another rise in excise duty would be a burden on UK wine businesses.