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Wineries paying more for glass bottles amid shortages, inflation

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Posted at 7:00 PM, Jun 16, 2022
and last updated 2022-06-16 19:17:01-04

VERSAILLES, Ky. (LEX 18) — Next time you uncork your favorite bottles of chardonnay or cabernet, it might be a more expensive pour. That’s partly because the wine industry is paying more for glass bottles.

At Wildside Winery in Woodford County, co-owner Elisha Holt is facing another budget challenge—this time in the form of glass bottles.

“A little bit of panic,” Holt said. “A little bit of a deep breath. We’ve survived the pandemic. We can keep going.”

Wildside fills a lot of bottles, since the winery makes dozens of different blends. But starting July 1, Holt says the cost of bottles from her supplier will go up at least 10%.

“For us right now, it's deciding, do we go ahead between now and July 1st, and buy the glass at the price we know it is? Or do we wait and will they have what we need? So it's a really big juggling act,” she said.

Currently, there are shortages for some materials used to make colored glass. And as demand for bottles outpaces supply, that Pinot Noir could get pricier, especially when you factor in gas and inflation. Plus, it’s not just bottles becoming more expensive. According to Holt, the cost of shipping a truck of grapes from California to Woodford County just went up by about $6,000.

Holt says so far, they haven’t raised prices at Wildside, and she’s hoping they don’t have to, so wines stay affordable for customers.

“Maybe there will be a shift, and things will level back out,” she said. “It's a world market. I don't know what that looks like.”

But she’s asking customers to keep small businesses in mind and understand prices may shift in the future.