Correspondent in London
Where he is, Winston Churchill must toast the news. According to press reports, pint-sized bottled champagne is about to make a comeback in the UK. And this is thanks to Brexit, which allows us to free ourselves from European rules imposing 0.75 liter bottles. A victory presented as highly symbolic…
According to the Sun, it's only a matter of weeks or months: the champagne will be available by the pint, or in a 0.57 liter bottle. For Churchill, a great fan of Pol Roger's wines, it was the ideal volume: "enough for two for lunch or one person for dinner." Before the kingdom joined the Common Market in 1973, 60% of the champagne consumed there was sold in pints, according to the Daily Mail. Other sources dispute this percentage which would in fact have been derisory. European legislation requires the sale of wine or champagne in bottles that are multiples of 0.75 liters.
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According to the tabloid, the government is about to change the law to allow small bottles banned by “the spoilsport of Brussels.” The Ministry of Enterprise and Trade announced that the ban would be lifted soon. And consultation with the English champagne and sparkling wine industries is said to be “imminent”. It is not certain that the producers see the matter very favorably, with the need for new production lines for a limited market. The measure affecting bubbles would also concern wine.
Through Brexit, the United Kingdom would therefore be redressing an injustice arising from the EU’s “war” against imperial measures. More broadly, a certain number of conservative Brexiteer MPs are calling for a general restoration of the system of imperial measurements, with the return of pounds and ounces in place of kilos in shops. In 2022, Boris Johnson launched a government consultation on the subject. But the study showed that businesses and individuals preferred to keep metric units, such as grams and liters. And other, more burning subjects had swept away the controversy.
Some wonder if the Sun is not moving forward a little quickly, to boost the morale of Brexiters while doubt seems to be gaining ground among the British population. According to the latest YouGov poll published on Wednesday, four years after Brexit, 57% of Britons would be in favor of the United Kingdom returning to the European single market, compared to 22% opposed. But the Conservatives are not considering it and even the leader of the Labor Party Keir Starmer, given the winner of the next elections, has assured that he will not seek to join the 27, the single market or the customs union, despite his opposition to the Brexit.