James Cartlidge MP
HM Treasury
1 Horse Guards Road

An open letter to the Exchequer Secretary to the Treasury, James Cartlidge MP

The manufacturing and recycling of glass bottles is wine's biggest greenhouse gas contributor. In order to minimise the carbon footprint of the wines we drink, we need to seek out wines in alternative packaging wherever possible.

Switching from glass to alternative formats could save as much as 750,000,000 KgCO2e of emissions every year in the UK alone. This is the equivalent of taking 350,000 cars off the road overnight, and equates to well over a third of the carbon footprint of wine consumed in the UK.

The IPCC’s (International Panel on Climate Change) recently found that without deep and meaningful emissions reductions across all sectors, it will not be possible to limit global warming to 1.5°C. In the scenarios they assessed, greenhouse gas emissions must be reduced by 43% this decade.

We believe that like all other sectors, wine is duty bound to achieve this target as an absolute minimum. This will not be possible without reducing our reliance on traditional glass bottles. Viable alternative formats include boxed wine, canned wine, kegs, returnable glass bottles, paper bottles and pouches, all of which come with vastly reduced carbon footprints as well as a variety of other benefits. Crucially, there is little or no perceivable difference in quality between these formats and wine in glass bottles for wines drunk within a few months of purchase, as most are.

Wine Traders for Alternative Formats (WTAF) is an alliance of premium and innovative wine companies promoting quality wine in alternative formats. We support the WTAF mission to reduce our reliance on single-use glass bottles and back their call for the introduction of consumer tax incentives for carbon-friendly alternative packaging.


Oliver Lea - Managing Director, The BIB Wine Company

Jancis Robinson OBE MW

Hugh Johnson OBE

Aidy Smith - TV Presenter, Drinks Columnist for the Evening Standard

Aleesha Hansel - Wine Writer, Judge and Presenter/Broadcaster

Andrew Catchpole - Editor, Harpers Wine and Spirit

Ceri Parke - Owner, Cantina Goccia

Dom de Ville - Director of Sustainability and Social Impact, The Wine Society

Dr Jacopo Mazzeo - Wine Journalist, Photographer and Consultant

Emma and Andrew Nielsen - Co-Owners, Le Grappin

Helen McGinn - Author, Wine Writer, Presenter and Co-Chair International Wine Challenge

Helena Nicklin - Wine Writer, Broadcaster, Judge & Author

Jack Green - Co-Founder, Vinca Wine

Jane MacQuitty MBE - The Times Wine Critic

Jane Masters MW

Jo Gilbert - Deputy Editor, Harpers Wine and Spirit

Joanna Simon - Editor, Waitrose & Partners Drinks Magazine

Kirsty Tinkler - Director Weino BIB

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