For those of you who stay in the loop, you might have seen the news recently about the new 25% tariff the United States is levying against the EU due to a long-standing battle about Boeing vs Airbus subsidies.
We're not politicians, we're not economists, and we're not here to harp about this candidate vs that candidate. That said, we'd be remiss to not at least bring this up, as it's something that is going to hugely affect the import business as long as these tariffs are enacted.
Long story short, it's 100% true. Starting October 18th at 12:01 AM EST, any still wine from the France, Germany, Spain, and the U.K. below 14% alcohol is going to be subject to an additional 25% tariff on the value of the wine, on top of what we're currently paying to import the wine.
The pallets of wine we bring in typically cost between $5,000 and $10,000. That means that we're going to be paying an additional $1,250-$2,500 every time we bring in wine from those regions.
What that means moving forward
We're not going to stop importing wine, and we're not going to pass along a 25% cost increase to our customers. Realistically, what's going to happen is going to be a sort of compromise, where everyone along the chain takes a hit, from producer to importer to distributor and customer. What does help us, however, is the fact that we don't actually have distributors. It will definitely help us keep our prices reasonable.
We've got a few orders in process with French and Spanish producers, and those are still happening. After that, it's likely we'll focus on Italy, Slovenia, Portugal, and other winemaking regions while we wait to see where the dust settles. We're lucky enough that we don't specialize and will be able to adapt as best we can.
P.S. This is not only a wine issue. There's tons of products like cheese, textiles, tools, and more that are subject to these tariffs. We're focused on wine here, but we feel for everyone who is going to be effected by these.