Chancellor George Osborne has scrapped the duty escalator on wines and spirits a year early in today's Budget.

Magners owner C&C Group has taken full ownership of Wallaces Express, the Scottiish wines and spirits wholesaler in which it took a 50% stake a year ago.

First Drinks has introduced new packaging for its Bénédictine and De Kuyper liqueurs.

The annual ball of trade charity The Benevolent raised over £40,000.

Languedoc producer Badet Clement has added a Pinot Gris to its Les Jamelles Cepage Rare range in a bid to offer UK consumers an alternative to Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Grigio.

Rum ambassador Ian Burrell will impart his knowledge of the rum industry to spirits buyers and wholesalers in a trade-only event the day before Rumfest 2014.

Displaying alcohol at the end of an aisle can boost sales by up to 46%, a study has revealed.

Halewood International is launching a range of gingerless RTDs under the Crabbie’s brand name.

Swedish cider Rekorderlig has launched a limited edition flavour – Apple-Guava.

New look for Fish Hoek

13 March, 2014

South African brand Fish Hoek has been given a new look with its fish skeleton logo printed into the bottle.

Bristol Beer Factory’s American pale ale Independence has been named supreme champion bottled beer in the Society of Independent Brewers’ National Beer Competition.

All change at SIBA

13 March, 2014

Guy Sheppard has taken over from Keith Bott as chairman of the Society of Independent Brewers.

Sogrape has released a new Mateus Expressions range that combines indigenous Portuguese grapes with well-known international varieties.

Buckingham Schenk

13 March, 2014

Buckingham Schenk has bolstered its team with the appointment of Patrick Sutton as sales support executive and William Lay as product development executive.

Torres has been voted the World's Most Admired Wine Brand for 2014, usurping last year's winner Concha y Toro. 

South African supplier Origin Wine is celebrating after passing three crucial audits in the past week.

The International Beer Challenge 2014 is now open for entries and a dedicated website has been launched to celebrate excellence in brewing.

Thousands of guests at the upcoming London Wine Fair will receive a copy of a report called Carpe Vinum that investigates the challenges faced with attracting 18 to 35-year-olds to wine.

Spanish lager producer Estrella Galicia has launched 50cl cans into the UK market and is targeting convenience and cash and carry channels.

Bargain Booze and Thorougoods franchisees will share around £180,000 in bonuses under a reward scheme launched by owner Conviviality Retail.

Off Licence News is campaigning for legal clarity over the Reducing the Strength initiative after an alarming rise in the number of councils banning retailers from selling various drinks.

Representatives from more than 40 councils attended a conference hosted by Suffolk Police this week with a view to implementing a ban on “super-strength” products in their areas.

Retailers like Pratik Sampat have complained about Reducing the Strength

It’s clear that ordinary retailers across the country are coming under great pressure to remove “super-strength” beers and ciders from their shelves.

Mangrove uproots

07 March, 2014

Premium spirits supplier Mangrove has broken away from parent company Coe Vintners to create an independent firm dedicated to driving value into the spirits market.

Readers still have time to back OLN’s push to get the duty escalator scrapped in this year’s Budget, as the industry’s efforts to influence the chancellor intensify before his March 19 announcement.

Morrisons has appointed Phil Cave to head up its wine team following the departure of Andrew Turner.

Australian winery Penfolds has released its 2014 Bin Series into the UK market as it celebrates its 170th birthday.

Heineken has vowed to bring Kronenbourg’s Hero Hop Farmers of Alsace back to TV screens after revising an ad that was banned for falsely implying the beer was brewed in France.

Logan Plant choosing barrels

A Hackney microbrewery has teamed up with multinational drinks giant Pernod Ricard to create a limited-edition stout aimed at the St Patrick’s Day market.

Berry Bros & Rudd is giving consumers the chance to make their own Bordeaux wines after signing an agency deal with start-up company Viniv.

AB-InBev has launched a rum-flavoured beer called Cubanisto to capitalise on the burgeoning market for spirit infused beers.

The wine trade will succeed if it fights off the threat of innovative rival categories by keeping ranges fresh, pushing new varietals and highlighting wine’s provenance, according to a leading supplier.

Chile, South Africa, New Zealand and France will be the star performers in the wine world this year, according to Ehrmann’s.

North Herefordshire MP Bill Wiggin has submitted an early day motion asking Parliament to debate the merits of scrapping the duty escalator on cider.

The body that represents pan-French appellation Vin de France has picked 87 wines to represent the country this year.

PLB has added Western Australian winery Capel Vale to its portfolio and will distribute a four-strong range across the UK.

A memorial service for Michael Cox will take place at Southwark Cathedral on Thursday, April 10.

A Portuguese wine company is launching a premium range of estate-grown wines after more than 30 years supplying the volume end of the market.

A Chicago drinks maker has hit back at the Portman Group after it was banned from marketing its Four Loko RTD brand in the UK.

Heineken is spending £100 million on marketing a wide range of new and existing brands in 2014 as it embarks on its “biggest innovation year ever”.

Jägermeister will hit TV screens for the first time ever next month as part of a £3 million ad campaign designed to boost its off-trade sales.

Portman Group bans Four Loko

27 February, 2014

The Portman Group has banned Chicago drinks maker Phusion Projects from marketing its Four Loko RTD brand in the UK.

Amarula launches Gold

27 February, 2014

Amarula cream liqueur is set to launch its first new product in 25 years – Amarula Gold, a clear golden 30% abv spirit.

Reh Kendermann’s 5.5% abv B by Black Tower grew 52% in 2013, bucking a decline in the lower-alcohol wine market.

Before he died last week, wine industry doyenne Michael Cox donated his limited-edition collection of Taittinger Champagne to drinks trade charity The Benevolent.

Californian wine supplier Gallo aims to make Moscato this season’s must-have varietal with the launch of two new wines and a £1 million ad campaign.

Gallo is targeting independent retailers with New Amsterdam vodka, the first spirits brand to sell 1 million cases within its first year in the US.

Diageo has been warned that its future advertising must not link alcohol with daringness or toughness after the watchdog banned a Captain Morgan ad featuring a daredevil buccaneer. 

Thatchers has released a limited edition cider made from 458 different types of apple grown in a single orchard.

Fairtrade Fortnight begins on Monday (Feb 24) and the Co-op is offering 20% off many of its own-brand range to celebrate 10 years of Fairtrade wine.

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