Importing Beers, Wines and Spirits into the UK

Site updated regularly - Page last updated April 2014

ukimports.org

When it comes to the importation of alcoholic drinks, you will have to pay excise duty on the alcohol content, regardless of which Country your drinks are being shipped from, just in the same way that excise duty is payable on Oils and Tobacco products. ukimports.org

Customs Tariff Classification

As is the same with any other products, when it comes to researching about importing alcohol in to the UK, it is firstly advisable to familiarize yourself with the way in which different alcoholic beverages are classified for Customs purposes in the UK Customs Tariff.

Chapter 22 of the Customs Tariff, covers ‘BEVERAGES, SPIRITS AND VINEGAR’, and is initially divided as follows:

2203 Beer made from malt
-
- 2203 00 01 - In containers holding 10 litres or less
- 2203 00 10 - In containers holding more than 10 litres

When it comes to the rate of excise duty on Beer, you will need to know the annual production, as indicated in the table below:

Beer
Incl. Ales & Lagers

Drink Strength
(ABV%)

Tax
Code

Rate of
Excise due*

Up to 1.2%
ukimports.org

431

£ 0.00 - nil
ukimports.org

Large brewery with an
annual production of

Between 1.2% and 2.8%
ukimports.org

446

£ 8.62
ukimports.org

60,000 Hectolitres or
more

Between 2.8% and 7.5%
ukimports.org

473

£ 18.74
ukimports.org

Exceeding 7.5% - High Strength Surcharge
ukimports.org

447

£ 5.29
ukimports.org

Beer
Incl. Ales & Lagers

Drink Strength
(ABV%)

Tax
Code

Rate of
Excise due*

Up to 1.2%
ukimports.org

431

£ 0.00 - nil
ukimports.org

Micro brewery with
an annual production

Between 1.2% and 2.8%
ukimports.org

TBA

£ 9.37
ukimports.org

of less than 5,000
Hectolitres

Between 2.8% and 7.5%
ukimports.org

443

£ 9.37
ukimports.org

Exceeding 7.5% - High Strength Surcharge
ukimports.org

447

£ 5.29
ukimports.org

Beer
Incl. Ales & Lagers

Drink Strength
(ABV%)

Tax
Code

Rate of
Excise due*

Up to 1.2%
ukimports.org

431

£ 0.00 - nil
ukimports.org

Small sized brewery
with an annual product.

Between 1.2% and 7.5%
ukimports.org

441

£ variable
ukimports.org

of more than 5,000
Hectolitres but less

Exceeding 7.5% - High Strength Surcharge
ukimports.org

447

£ 5.29
ukimports.org

than 60,000 HL


*the rates shown above are as per the new rates implemented on the 24th March 2014, and are based on the percentage of alcohol

…………………………………

2204 Wine of fresh grapes, including fortified wines; grape must other than
that of heading 2009

-
- 2204 10 - Sparkling wine
- 2204 21 - Other wine; grape must with fermentation prevented or arrested by the addition of alcohol
- 2204 30 - Other grape must

…………………………………

2205 Vermouth and other wine of fresh grapes flavoured with plants or aromatic
substances

-
- 2205 10 - In containers holding 2 litres or less
- 2205 90 - Other

Wine & Made-Wine

Drink Strength
(ABV%)

Tax
Code

Rate of
Excise due*


Low Alcohol Drinks

Up to 1.2%
ukimports.org

431

£ 0.00 - nil
ukimports.org

These rates apply to
both Sparkling & Still

Between 1.2% and 4.0%
ukimports.org

433

£ 0.8421
ukimports.org

Between 4.0% and 5.5%
ukimports.org

435

£ 1.1580
ukimports.org


Wine

Drink Strength
(ABV%)

Tax
Code

Rate of
Excise due*

Sparkling

Between 5.5% and 8.5%
ukimports.org

412

£ 2.6461
ukimports.org

Between 8.5% and 15.0%
ukimports.org

411

£ 3.5007
ukimports.org

Wine

Drink Strength
(ABV%)

Tax
Code

Rate of
Excise due*

Still

Between 5.5% and 15.0%
ukimports.org

413

£ 2.7331
ukimports.org

Wine

Drink Strength
(ABV%)

Tax
Code

Rate of
Excise due*

Still or Sparkling

Between 15.0% and 22.0%
ukimports.org

415

£ 3.6437
ukimports.org

Exceeding 22.0%
ukimports.org

419

£ see below
ukimports.org


Wine & Made-Wine

Drink Strength
(ABV%)

Tax
Code

Rate of
Excise due*

Sparkling

Between 5.5% and 8.5%
ukimports.org

422

£ 2.6461
ukimports.org

Between 8.5% and 15.0%
ukimports.org

421

£ 3.5007
ukimports.org

Made-Wine

Drink Strength
(ABV%)

Tax
Code

Rate of
Excise due*

Still

Between 5.5% and 15.0%
ukimports.org

423

£ 2.7331
ukimports.org

Made-Wine

Drink Strength
(ABV%)

Tax
Code

Rate of
Excise due*

Still or Sparkling

Between 15.0% and 22.0%
ukimports.org

425

£ 3.6437
ukimports.org

Exceeding 22.0%
ukimports.org

429

£ see below
ukimports.org


*the rates shown above are as per the new rates implemented on the 24th March 2014, and are based per Litre of Wine or Made-Wine

Type of Drink

Drink Strength
(ABV%)

Tax
Code

Rate of
Excise due*

Wine

Exceeding 22.0%
ukimports.org

419

£ 28.22
ukimports.org

Made-Wine

Exceeding 22.0%
ukimports.org

429

£ 28.22
ukimports.org


*the rates shown above are as per the new rates implemented on the 24th March 2014, and are based per Litre of Alcohol

…………………………………

2206 Other fermented beverages (for example, cider, perry, mead); mixtures of
fermented beverages and mixtures of fermented beverages and non-alcoholic beverages, not elsewhere specified or included

-
- 2206 00 10 - Piquette
- 2206 00 31 - Other

Type of Drink

Tax Code Rate of Excise Due*
Cider and Perry - Strength up to 1.2% 431 £ 0.00 - no excise duty payable on low-strength Cider or Perry. ukimports.org
Sparkling Cider and Perry - Strength between 1.2 and 5.5% 481 £ 0.3966   ukimports.org
Sparkling Cider and Perry - Strength between 5.5 and 8.5% 485 £ 2.6461   ukimports.org
Still Cider and Perry - Strength between 1.2 and 7.5% 481 £ 0.3966   ukimports.org
Still Cider and Perry - Strength between 7.5 and 8.5% 483 £ 0.5952   ukimports.org
Cider and Perry - Strength exceeding 8.5% 435
(classed as Made-Wine)
£ see above   ukimports.org

*the rates shown above are as per the new rates implemented on the 24th March 2014, and are based per Litre of Cider or Perry

Please Note:
Only pure apple cider or pure pear cider is classed as 'Cider'. Any/all other cider which is coloured or flavoured, is classed as 'Made-Wine' and is subject to a higher rare of excise duty under tax code [435].

…………………………………

2207 Undenatured ethyl alcohol of an alcoholic strength by volume of 80 % vol or higher; ethyl alcohol and other spirits, denatured, of any strength
-
- 2207 10 - Undenatured ethyl alcohol of an alcoholic strength by volume of 80 % vol or higher
- 2207 20 - Ethyl alcohol and other spirits, denatured, of any strength

…………………………………

2208 Undenatured ethyl alcohol of an alcoholic strength by volume of less than 80 % vol; spirits, liqueurs and other spirituous beverages
-
- 2208 30 - Whiskies
- 2208 40 - Rum and other spirits obtained by distilling fermented sugar-cane products
- 2208 50 - Gin and Geneva
- 2208 60 - Vodka
- 2208 70 - Liqueurs and cordials
- 2208 90 - Other

Type of Drink

Drink Strength
(ABV%)

Tax
Code

Rate of
Excise due*

Spirits

Between 1.2% and 8.0%
ukimports.org

438

£ 28.22
ukimports.org

(Incl. Spirit-based drinks)

Exceeding 8.0%
ukimports.org

451

£ 28.22
ukimports.org


*the rates shown above are as per the new rates implemented on the 24th March 2014, and are based per Litre of Alcohol

…………………………………

Further sub-divisions do apply on top of the above descriptions. Either Click Here to view our dedicated web page, to find the correct classification code for your particular goods being imported, or call the Customs Classification Helpline on: (T) +44 (0)1702 366 077. ukimports.org

back to top 

 

Alcohol of European Origin

Most goods which originate from any member European of the EU, have the luxury of not incurring any charges of duty and / or VAT. That, however, does not apply to excisable goods, such as Alcohol and Tobacco products, etc.

 

Excise duty must be paid on all alcoholic drinks before it can be released into Free Circulation for resale or any other commercial use. (The exception being when small amounts are transported by an individual for personal consumption, and is under the Personal Allowance limit).

 

To arrange for the Customs clearance, and payment of excise duty, you will need to employ the services of a 'REDS Agent' ('REDS' stands for: Registered Excise Dealers and Shippers). There are several about, and although your preferred agent may not be a 'REDS Agent' themselves, they may have negotiated preferential rates, with an agent whom they use regularly, meaning that they too will be able to arrange the clearance for you.

 

We can help you with the clearance and/or shipping of drinks from another EU Member Country. Contact our Imports Team for full details.

 

For more information on how REDS works, please feel free to contact a member of our Imports Team, on (T) 0845 309 6360, or email us at: enquiries@ukimports.org

 

Please note:

If you have alcohol shipped from outside the EU, then you do NOT require the services of a 'REDS Agent', but we can still help you with the Customs clearance. ukimports.org

back to top 

 

The old paper system (AAD) & the new EMCS System (e-AD)

Before January 2011, it used to be common place for alcoholic beverages which were being shipped to the UK, from another Member EC State, be accompanied by an AAD (Administritive Accompanying Document) Form, but this has since been updated into a digital format, and computerised on the EMCS computer system. If your goods are shipped from the EC, duty suspended, then your supplier will now need to registered on the European-wide EMCS computer system, creating an e-AD record of the movement of your drinks, for each shipment.

 

Please note:

Even though this is only a requirement to duty suspended drinks, UK Customs prefers that even those shipments which are 'duty pre-paid' to be entered onto the EMCS system. ukimports.org

back to top 

 

How to calculate excise duty

The way in which you calculate excise duty on alcoholic drinks, varies depending on the type of drink, which you are looking to import.

 

For assistance with the calculation of excise duty, or if you just want more information on on this or any other topic, please contact our Imports Team on: (T) 0845 309 6360, or email your enquiry to: enquiries@ukimports.org. ukimports.org

back to top 

.................................................................

 

- Click here to read Public Notice 203 - Registered Excise Dealers and Shippers

- Click here to read more about the AAD

 

Email Us