As between wine producers and their UK customers
This is outside the scope of this article, except in one respect. Contracts for the supply of wine to certain "Designated Retailers" (the major UK supermarkets – Tesco, Asda, Sainsbury, Morrisons, et al, currently ten in number) are subject to a set of mandatory "fair dealing" terms that those Retailers must include in every supply contract, with every supplier, irrespective of where in the world the supplier is located. Click here for a more detailed look at the implications of this for Supply Agreements.
As between wine producers and their UK agents or distributors
The starting point is the contract. The parties will generally be bound by the terms of their contract unless there is some legal justification or requirement for not enforcing it. (See competition law, applicable law and restrictive covenants).
A contract may be in writing, or oral, or both. If there is no written contract and nothing (e.g. correspondence, minutes or memoranda) evidencing agreement:
there may be evidence that the parties have orally agreed certain things, or from which it may be possible to infer that they must have done so;
it may be arguable that there are implied terms giving the producer certain rights (see implied terms);
an agent may owe the producer "fiduciary duties" ........
Please do not hesitate to contact us if you have a specific query.