I worked out the other week that, in an average year, our company would pay more than a quarter of a million euros to the government, when you include duty, VAT, PAYE etc. Duty makes up the bulk of it. Now, we are a tiny, insignificant speck on the Irish wine map, so imagine what the likes of Gilbeys, Irish Distillers or even O'Brien's must cough up. It doesn't bear thinking about.
I have no problems paying VAT or income tax, but duty just seems so archaic and out of touch with the reality of our EU membership, free movement of goods etc. Then, to increase it when it should be phased out, just goes to show what cultured and sophisticated leaders we have.
At least the money is put to good use with our world-leading health system and our well-equipped schools, not to mention our 21st century transport system....
I promise from now on, I will get back to waxing lyrical about the romance of the wine trade. I promise.
And as my 3 year old son says - "You can't break a promise".
Unless you are a politician.
Sorry, couldn't resist one last swipe. Romance tomorrow.