EU Customers and those outside of UK mainland – The Malt Miller Service

Posted on 23rd December 2020 by Categories: Blog, Malt Miller Info Tags: , ,

UPDATE 26th of February 

The quick read:- We are currently shipping to Albania, Andora, Austria, Belgium, Bosnia & Herzegovina,  Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Faroe Islands, Finland, France, Germany, Gibraltar, Greenland, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Israel, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania,  Luxembourg, Malta, Monaco, Netherlands, North Macedonia, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, San Marino, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain,  Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey and Vatican City using DHL express or economy, this is selectable at checkout.

We have just completed succesful testing of the final steps for integrating DHL services to our website for the rest of Europe.

These updates have been added to the website on the afternoon of the 26th of February. With this update you will also be pleased to hear that we have added more countries and completed opening the site up to the rest of Europe for ordering.

As mentioned previously in this post there are some changes to take note of when ordering:

UK VAT Free – our website will not be applying UK VAT to your purchase, this was 20% on your order previously.

Courier Fee – every order will have a courier handling fee applied to it and you will be contacted to pay this before delivery. It is what the courier charges for handling your customs order, this varies depending on your location and can be between 10-25 euros, on a large order this will seem more acceptable, but if you’re order a single item it will still be added and could be higher the item you ordered so it is advisable to think about your order to get the most out of this fee.

Import Duty & Local VAT – this is calculated based on the contents of your order, volumes, price, their country of origin, your location, so every order can and will be different. The managing of this is why the courier charges the above fee, some items have it applied and some don’t, it will vary country to country.  This can be anything from 1-10% each item, but in most cases it will be less than the UK VAT you used have applied.

Please remember these fees will need to be paid at your end to the courier before delivery, declining to pay them will result in your order not being delivered and a further cost to have them redelivered and any refunds offered will be excluding products which cannot be resold i.e. malts, yeast, hops and minus any charges incurred for failed delivery.

This is most likely the last update we will need to make to this post, so for further update and changes to Delivery please do check out the Delivery page on our site

UPDATE 16th of February 

The quick read:-

We are now shipping to Ireland, France, Germany, Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg using DHL express or economy, this is selectable at checkout.

Last year as part of our Brexit planning we took steps to start reviewing the courier services. We’ve been very happy with DPD and so have our customers. As part of this audit we did however identify that there were options to improve services for our International customers.

So we started conversations with DHL as potentially adding them to the website, getting our systems to talk to theirs takes a bit of planning and changes behind the scenes. What DHL bring with them is their own full network globally, so deliveries outside of the UK are made totally by them and not passed to a third party. They also offer an Express On Demand Delivery service with full management for the customer of their delivery (just like we have in the UK with DPD), and on both Express and Economy Select the shipment has a digital customs invoicing system to speed up the shipment, something which is very key with the Brexit transition. We feel this improves the whole ordering process for our customers.

So as part of the slowly introducing International Orders to the site we have been shipping customers deliveries using both DHL and DPD to see how the new service measured up to our existing.

This week we are now in the final stages of completing integration of DHL as our chosen partner to the site for International customers after almost 12 months of work. Once this is completed this week we hope then to bring back the other countries that have been waiting for us to open to them.

As of today the following can now order from the site:

Ireland, France, Germany, Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg

UPDATE 3rd of February – More EU countries added

As of today we’ve added Germany and Netherlands to the countries that we are now shipping to. Meaning currently the following can now order from the site:

Ireland, France, Germany, Netherlands

We will continue to monitor the progress of parcels to customers from these countries and as long as all continues successfully we will add more to the site.

UPDATE 29th of January – Site Opening

Good news, as of 28th January the site is now taking orders from France and Republic of Ireland.

Courier services, both DPD and to a lesser extent DHL have been overwhelmed with  the extra burden in place but having sent a good quantity of parcels now we are confident that the service level is acceptable.

We will open to other EU countries just as soon as we see that service level increasing. As always, we are desperate to serve our EU customers but will only do so when confident that all parcels will be received.

Please do note, the site now does not charge  UK VAT in fact, when you look at the site all prices are shown minus VAT, so before the order arrives you will be contacted by the courier to pay local VAT and any import duty and an admin fee.

Note on import duty – If there is any charged it is minimal, 1 -3% and only on certain items.

Note on courier admin fee – this varies locally but is between 5 – 15 Euros.

UPDATE 27th of January

An overdue update, we had to open the site the week for new orders, but as we explained we wanted to get the orders that were received before Christmas to customers before we opened the site again for new orders.

Well it has proved harder than it should have been to get some orders to customers. The majority of the orders have been received by customers. However a handful of orders have been returned to us after having been sent out 3 times with DPD, all were dispatched correctly and with the relevant required documentation.

We are waiting on explanations from DPD on why they are not making it to the final destination, as without this and knowing if it is simply an issue at the port, or with the new systems that they are working with it could be an issue we see repeated on any new orders.

We certainly don’t want to take your orders to then find deliveries are being returned to us due to issues in the network that can’t be explained or resolved. So at this time we are still unable to give a date or time frame for being able to open the site to EU customers I’m afraid.

UPDATE 19th of January

All orders that were received and impacted by the closure of ports have now been dispatched with  DPD and DHL. We expect these to be arriving with customers over the next 5-7 days.

We will continue to monitor the progress of these deliveries to customers over the coming days and really appreciate the patience and understanding shown by customers who were effected by first the port closure and then the suspension of collections due to Brexit.

Shipment to Northern Ireland has been reinstated on the site.

The opening of the site for new orders will happen in the next few days after a final round of testing of the new systems that have been integrated to our site.

UPDATE 15th of January

DPD have communicated to us today they expect to start collecting shipments again for EU and ROI shipment from tomorrow, so that means that we will be able to continue to ship out those orders we have been holding next week.

We will of course be updating customers as we ship their individual order to them.

Once we have cleared the back log of orders we will be able to update your when we expect to open the site for new orders to be placed.

UPDATE 13th of January

We have received a further update from DPD who continue to suspend the collection of orders shipping to ROI and the EU.

This is due to the changes with the customs clearing and the New Computerised Transit System which the UK government has offered for clearing of goods. They will be issuing a further update on Friday the 15th.

We know that this is frustrating and we are investigating other courier services that we can use to get orders shipped out to you and to use to allow the site to open to our ROI and EU customers.

In terms of opening the site for new orders, we have decided to delay this until to ensure that the orders we have are prioritised first before taking any new orders. We expect the site to open again week commencing 25th of January.

Thank you for your patience at this time.

UPDATE 8th of January

So as we started to make good progress sending out the orders we have been holding since the port shut down before Christmas, we have just received the news that our courier is suspending EU collections due to the volume of parcels and delays at the ports. This suspension is until Tuesday 12th of January, as soon as we can we will continue to send out these orders. We are expecting some of what we sent out yesterday to be returned to us again, as before we will hold onto these, ensuring any yeast is refrigerated etc. until we can send them out again.

UPDATE 7th of January

As of the 6th of January we have started to ship the orders from outside of the UK that we received before the issue with the ports. We are aiming to have all of these out of the premises by the end of this week.

As with any new systems there are teething issues to be worked out and we are liaising with our couriers to work these bugs out. Once they have finalised the processes we will complete the final amends and tweaks to the new systems and processes required on our website to open the site for customers outside of the UK. We very much expect that we will be able to accept new orders next week if all goes well.

We will of course keep you all updated and announce the reopening on all of our social media accounts the minute the site opens. Thank you for your patience whilst we do this.

UPDATE 5th of January

Couriers have implemented an electronic system to upload commercial invoices that are now necessary for our EU customers to receive orders. We had been working with DPD to get this system working for most of last year and preparing our website with all the new information needed. It went live on the 4th of January, and as you would expect with any new electronic implementation there were a few teething problems.

We are giving this our full attention and waiting for the courier to resolve the issues found on their system, we fully expect that we will be able to open the site for new EU orders, but we can’t give you an exact date, I would like to think that its possible from next week (week commencing 11th) and will continue to update as we progress these changes.

As always we very much appreciate the support that our customers show and we are doing our level best for you.


EDIT 30th December.

Well the good news is that at least “some sort” of deal was agreed on the 24th December and the details were released to the public on the 29th December. Having poured through as much of the agreement as I am able, we are still none the wiser. I am expecting information from DPD and DHL which will hopefully shed some more light. At present our plan is to resume taking EU and Northern Island orders as soon as possible after the 4th January.

18th of December

I sit at my desk thinking back to when The Malt Miller was in its infancy, what we set out to do, did right, didn’t get quite right and learnt from? Amongst our greatest achievements is looking at customers across Europe and not seeing our own Island as a boundary to trade. We have and always will, see our customers as just that, where they reside is immaterial. The same is true of suppliers, it has never mattered as to where they are located, both suppliers and customers are seen as friends.

Which brings me to the dreaded subject that is Brexit. Apparently we have been in a “transition period” Well not from where we have been trading because nothing had changed, whatsoever. Right until about now, our transition period has started but with just a few days to go, our governments are unable to tell us what we are transitioning to.

As a company we have spent vast sums of both time and funds on getting ourselves in a position to be able to keep trading with our European friends come what may.

It maybe that by the time I have finished writing the situation has changed, again, more information has come to light perhaps, who knows?

But, we do need to make some decisions, this, perhaps, fluid in an evolving position and as such I will be updating this post as and when new information comes to light. It maybe that our hand is forced by the couriers handling our goods however, our plan was to suspend EU and outside of UK mainland order placement on the 28th December and restart after the 4th January with new systems on our website and with our couriers new systems.

EDIT: Well our hand has been forced due to the French port suspension on Sunday the 20th because of COVID19 and the couriers now suspending shipments to Europe I’m afraid. So from this point forward (Wednesday 23rd) we are going to have to suspend orders from our customers in Europe. Those customers who have orders placed with us, we will contact you directly today and tomorrow to let you know what is happening.

As far as the future position stands we are able to :-

  • Process orders without VAT for all EU orders if needed
  • Automatically produce fully conforming commercial invoices that are electronically uploaded to the couriers.
  • Use two different couriers using both road and airfreight

The above is what is required when we send outside the EU at present and with our best judgement will be what is required if we leave with “no deal”.  Suspending is not ideal for us or you, but will allow these systems to be implemented, and prevent any orders sitting in an almost limbo state of in-between old and new ways of working.

As always we thank all our customers and suppliers for their support, see you on the other side.

Rob & team TMM

Summary of Change Implementation

20th of December – Ports to Europe closed due to COVID19. Courier collections suspended.

23rd of December – Courier collections suspended for EU deliveries until 4th of January. ROI and NI continue.

28th of December – Planned suspension of orders for remaining customers outside of UK mainland (ROI, NI, Channel Islands)

4th of January – Planned switch on of ordering for outside of UK mainland customers. Courier collections resume.

15th of January – Update from DPD due with regards to collecting EU, ROI and NI orders.

18th of January – If DPD reinstates collections we plan to ship orders received again to customers waiting

25th of January – If all orders are cleared we expect to open the site for new orders

2 thoughts on “EU Customers and those outside of UK mainland – The Malt Miller Service”

  1. Anna Moe says:

    Hi Rob and his team
    I was just about to make my last order with you, just to find this blog post 🙁

    I would like to thank you for providing those of us who live on the continent with excellent products and service in the past years.

    I wish you and your team all the best, and I hope it will be possible to order from you again in the future <3

    Cheers for now, and a Happy New Year!

  2. anders.harnbro says:

    Hopefully this will be more stable soon. I also, as Anna Moe earlier, would lika to say thank you for excellent service and products. I will return.
    Best regards from a home brewer

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