The CEO of Fortnum & Mason has said the luxury retail brand is stockpiling “hundreds of thousands” of bottles of champagne to ensure there is enough of a supply for the Chelsea Flower Show in May.
Ewan Venters told talkRADIO’s James Max that the reports the company were stockpiling in preparation for no-deal Brexit, which originally circulated in December, were “100 per cent absolutely true”, but that the bottles were only an extra month's supply.
Mr Venters said that the decision to stockpile had been made because of the store's involvement in the Chelsea Flower Show, which begins on May 21.
He said: “86 per cent of everything we sell is made in Britain but champagne and champagne and it has to come from France.
“And, in May when the Chelsea Flower Show is in full swing and we are the champagne sponsor so I thought it would irresponsible not to - if just in case there are delays because of Brexit – increase our cover by about an extra month supply.
“It is to ensure that we do not sell out for all those keen gardeners at the Chelsea Flower Show.”
Mr Venters said that the company had not made the decision “lightly”.
He added: “Given the high-profile nature of the event we genuinely thought it would be important to make sure we carried a few more weeks supply.”