Sales of wines and spirits in both the on and off trades are flat or falling by volume, but increasing by value, due to record tax increases. That’s according to the latest Market Report from the Wine & Spirit Trade Association (WSTA), which also said a significant rise in higher priced wines in shops demonstrates a shift away from drinking out. The Market Report found that on-trade sales volumes of wine fell 1% in the year to 16 April but rose in value by 10%. Similarly, volumes sales of spirit sales in the on-trade were flat over the period but were up 3% in value. In the off-trade, sales of spirits in the year to 14 May were flat in volume but up 6% in value. Shop sales of wine for the same period were down 2% in volume but up 3% in value. Off-trade sales of wine priced £9-£10 were up 34% in volume and value on last year, while sales of wine in the £10-plus range increased 12%. WSTA chief executive Jeremy Beadles said: “This year’s further above inflation increase in excise duty and the rise in VAT and other taxes have really fed through to prices and millions of hard-pressed consumers know it only too well. “The impact is being felt particularly in pubs and restaurants as people go out less and that switch is seeing some consumers spending on treating at home instead. Overall consumers are feeling the pinch.” The Report drew on data from independent sources including CGA Strategy and Nielson, with analysis by Tim Wilson, author of the Wilson Drinks Report. Meanwhile, WSTA-commissioned research by YouGov of 1,731 adult British drinkers, included in the Report, found 61% regularly use social media a third said most content was not relevant to them. In addition, 71% said they buy products and services online - the proportion is higher amongst wine drinkers.