FWD chairman Francis Ball emphasised the importance of the alcoholic drinks category to the wholesale trade, but warned that duty fraud was damaging the business of legitimate operators.
He said: “We are very active in this arena. It is a real cancer in the sector, it is seriously undermining the sector, and it is growing.”
He told the conference: “I can’t, for obvious reasons, tell you much about the detail of the work we are engaged in, but we are working closely with the suppliers and HM Revenue Customs.
“To a degree it is clandestine work, but we are doing everything in our power to bring some solution to this very difficult area and I think we are making some progress.”