This is important; please read. The United States has decided to impose MORE TARIFFS on France and Germany. The Trump administration has decided to escalate tariffs against European wines in a last-minute decision on December 31, 2020. These tariffs take effect on January 12th, 2021, without any exemptions to US importers for wines already paid for that hasn't yet arrived. There was no warning about these new tariffs, nor was there a period for public comment. I'm linking two articles for you, one from the Wall Street Journal and one from Wine Searcher's W. Blake Gray. If you haven't been up to date on these tit-for-tat wine tariffs, it's a direct result of the Airbus/Boeing fight over who gets subsidized the most...
The first round of 25% tariffs began in late 2019, and the entire industry has been trying to mitigate the hit throughout an entire year in a pandemic.
From the WSJ article linked above. The impact of tariffs has been significant. Imports of wine from France fell 54% during the first five months of 2020 from a year earlier, while those from Germany fell by 42%, according to the US Wine Trade Alliance.
“These tariffs devastate U.S. restaurants and small businesses at the worst possible time,“ Ben Aneff, president of the group. “It underscores how important it will be for President-elect Biden to quickly repeal the restaurant tariffs, and find ways to more effectively influence the EU while doing less damage to businesses here at home.”
So, while there's nothing we can do now, wine friends, there is still hope. A brilliantly frank op-ed in the Washington Post written by chefs Kwame Onwuachi and Alice Waters suggests ways in which the Biden administration can save restaurants and small businesses across the country. As soon as we know more, including how to help, we will keep you all up to date. Until then, we bid you adieu, and raise our glasses in hope of conciliatory action. - Erin.