Majestic Plans to Build Brexit Stockpile of European Wines

(Bloomberg) -- Majestic Wine Plc wants to make sure Britons don’t run out of French Champagne or Spanish Rioja when the U.K. leaves the European Union in March.

The U.K.-based wine retailer is planning to bring 5 million to 8 million pounds ($6.4 million to $10 million) of extra inventory into the U.K. to mitigate any potential supply-chain disruption from Brexit, the company said in a statement Thursday.

Majestic joins companies across industries ranging from drugs to food in hoarding goods amid uncertainty over what will happen in March. Drugmakers are building supplies of essential medicines, Premier Foods Plc is adding to its inventory of packaging materials, ingredients and raw materials, and Imperial Brands Plc is stockpiling 30 million pounds worth of cigarettes.

“We sell a lot of French, Spanish, Italian wines,” Majestic Wine Chief Financial Officer James Crawford said in a phone interview. Whether that continues after Brexit could depend on the terms, he added. “If we end up having an almighty fight and suddenly it costs an extra 5 pounds to get a bottle of wine from Europe, the consumer’s going to vote with their feet in terms of the pricing of things.”

©2018 Bloomberg L.P.