UK wine-production keeps gaining in popularity, with a 41 per cent increase in new labels

 
Madeline Ratcliffe
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Camilla's a fan of British wine (Source: Getty)

It's been a vintage year for UK wine-makers, with 65 new producers registering with HMRC up 41 per cent from last year.

There are currently 470 commercial vineyards in England and Wales, mainly producing sparkling wine as our slightly-damp climate and chalky soil is similar to conditions in Champagne.

The growing numbers – more than double the 31 applications to register in 2012 – reflect the growing trend for artisan products and craft beers which have been shaking up the industry.

UK accountants UHY Hacker Young said in the last year there has been a 24 per cent in the number of new microbreweries in the UK, from 291 to 361, and the number of artisan spirit distilleries has more than trebled, up from 20 to 65.

James Simmonds, partner at UHY Hacker Young, puts the success of the industry, and its rising stars like Chapel Down, Denbies, the UK's largest vine-yard, and Three Choirs vineyard, down to better quality produced and growing interest in local produce.

He said: “The UK’s wine industry has really stepped up its game in recent years and as it continues to make its way up the rankings these products are increasingly viewed as luxury items.”

“As customers have increasingly realised the high quality of the wine produced in the UK, demand has soared and a greater number of producers than ever before are flocking to the market.

“There’s huge demand in the UK for locally sourced products and the growing interest in the wine industry naturally follows on from the surge in popularity of craft beer over the last five years. English wine is now regarded as an aspirational product in the same vein as craft beer.”

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