Tesco has defended wine awards in the face of criticism from food and wine taster Martin Isark that they are nothing but meaningless, money-making schemes.

Winemakers can pay up to £120 for entry to such competitions, knowing there is a strong chance of winnning.

Isark, author of Supermarket Own Brand Guide, said the awards tell the consumer little about the quality of wines.

But Tesco, which sells 150 wines that have won awards at the International Wine Challenge, has fought back, saying they do provide a useful guide.