Katie Mollet, Morrisons' new wine sourcing manager

Morrisons is culling its wine range by 15% as part of a continued bid to reposition its approach to the category.

The head of the Wine & Spirit Trade Association has urged the industry to collaborate on finding ways to combat street drinking in towns and cities.

Wiltshire-based importer Copestick Murray is poised to become a significant player in the booming sparkling wine market after selling a 60% stake to German fizz giant Henkell.

Gormley: longer-term funding

Naked offers bond options

09 September, 2013

Online retailer Naked Wines is offering investors the chance to buy fine wine bonds to raise £3 million to invest in winemakers.

Market day: Spivey is on a mission to bring wine to the masses

The organiser of London’s first Wine Car Boot is planning another event before the end of the year after declaring last week’s sale a success.

Wine Rack franchise offer

06 September, 2013

Bargain Booze franchisees will be offered the chance to convert to the Wine Rack fascia if their stores meet criteria on location and customer demographics.

Heineken has become the official beer of the 57th BFI London Film Festival, which takes place from October 9-20.

Pernod Ricard UK has added a Pinot Grigio to Jacob’s Creek’s lower-alcohol Cool Harvest range. 

Brands team reshuffle for PLB

05 September, 2013

PLB has made new appointments to the brand team that is part of its buying team.

The Advertising Standards Authority has ordered Hi Spirits to change its advertising material for the fourth time this year over an ad for its Fireball Whiskey liqueur brand.

More than 100 Rioja wineries are teaming up to hold a generic trade tasting in the UK for the first time.

New look for Ballantine's

04 September, 2013

Pernod Ricard UK has given Ballantine’s Finest a new look in a bid to appeal to modern whisky drinkers.

Lancashire brewer Thwaites has become the UK distributor for Warsteiner, one of Germany’s biggest premium beer producers. 

Lord Black of Brentwood will be the keynote speaker at the Wine & Spirit Trade Association’s annual conference this month.

German-owned sparkling wine producer Henkell has bought a 60% stake in the wine importer Copestick Murray, best known for its I Heart wine brand.

Bargain Booze owner Conviviality Retail has bought the Wine Rack chain from Venus Wine & Spirit Merchants.

Waitrose showcases Turkish wine

02 September, 2013

Turkish wine is the unusual star of the Waitrose Wine Showcase running in shops and online from September 2 to October 8.

The overwhelming majority of drinks are packaged responsibly, the Portman Group has announced. 

Halewood International’s Crabbie’s alcoholic ginger beer has taken over title sponsorship of the Grand National and Grand National Festival at Aintree.

With just under two weeks to go, the Beautiful South Tasting is now open for online registration.

A Cheshire councillor has called on his own local authority to scrap plans for a minimum unit price on alcohol.

Wine Rack has opened a shop in Hampstead - bringing its estate to 20. 

The Co-operative has expanded its premium own-label Truly Irresistible into wine.

The Wine & Spirit Trade Association will tackle how digital technology and increasing regulation are affecting drinks consumers at its 2013 conference on September 25.

Pierre-Henry Gagey and Jacques Lardière

Maison Louis Jadot has snapped up the 8ha Resonance Vineyard to produce Pinot Noir in Oregon’s Willamette Valley for an undisclosed fee.

New Zealand wine exports to the UK slipped by 2% in value in the year to June 30, according to New Zealand Winegrowers.

Gallo has unveiled Barefoot Bubbly Pink Moscato as a new addition to its Californian wine portfolio.

HMRC has launched a 10-week consultation to assess the costs, feasibility and effectiveness of launching a wholesaler registration scheme.

Carlsberg Euro 2012Carlsberg said tough comparisons with last year - when it sponsored Euro 2012 - contributed to a year-on-year sales decline

Brewing giants Heineken and Carlsberg blamed bad weather, tax hikes and continued austerity for declining volume sales in the UK market.

The Whisky Shop is taking on Selfridges and Harvey Nichols by opening its newest outlet in the heart of Manchester’s retail area.

Norwich-based retailer Naked Wines has secured a £6.4 million from German wine seller WIV Wein International to fund a further push into US and Australian markets.

New Zealand Winegrowers has hailed the decision to plant grapes in Marlborough as the “single most important event in the history of the New Zealand wine industry” as the region prepares to celebrate its 40th anniversary.

testing

21 August, 2013

sas

Diageo is introducing a liqueur called Smirnoff Gold, which blends Smirnoff No.21 premium vodka with natural cinnamon flavouring and visible flakes of edible 23 carat gold leaf, into the UK market.

Pernod Ricard UK has expanded its premium wine portfolio with the introduction of Graffigna Centenario Malbec.

Croatia is set for a push into the UK wine market after joining the EU this summer and starting to enjoy more relaxed trading conditions, according to Vina Croatia.

Sun shines on drinks sales

16 August, 2013

Soaring lager, cider and sparkling wine sales drove an 18% rise in BWS volumes during the heatwave that bathed Britain in sunshine throughout July.

The Department of Health said it is fully committed to the Responsibility Deal it signed with the drinks industry despite a series of high-profile walkouts by health bodies.

Bargain Booze owner Conviviality Retail is in the process of buying two shops to run as “incubation” stores to sell on to new franchisees.

Brand Phoenix has moved to reassure the trade of its commitment to the UK market after co-founder Steve Barton announced he was leaving to push its First Cape brand into the US.

Oddbins redesign begins

16 August, 2013

The first revamp of Oddbins stores in 17 years is underway with a new fascia starting to appear across the estate and a new-look website.

Energy drinks giant Red Bull has decided to end a dispute it started with Norfolk microbrewer Redwell.

The Advertising Standards Authority said it may clamp down on alcohol suppliers’ and retailers’ use of social media after admitting that age-gating children so they cannot access adult content is failing.

Tobacco manufacturers are fighting EU plans which would ban menthol and slimline cigarettes, all packs of 10 and limit sales of rolling tobacco to 40g pouches.

The man who led Costcutter’s takeover of the Rhythm & Booze off-licence chain is predicting more consolidation in the convenience retailing sector.

Pernod Ricard is rolling out new bottle designs for its range of Absolut flavoured vodkas.

Red Bull has written to Norwich-based brewer Redwell, requesting it immediately withdraws its trademark application, claiming the names are too similar and would confuse customers.

A cocktail zone, beer and wine chillers and iPads with information on malt whisky are among the features in three new-look stores unveiled by Tesco.

Tesco has revamped its Wine by the Case mobile site after discovering that a quarter of its online wine sales now comes from shoppers using their mobile phones.

Baileys Chocolate Luxe

Diageo has released a Belgian chocolate liqueur under its Baileys brand in what it bills as the world’s first fusion of Irish whiskey and real chocolate.

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COMMENT

Rosé tinted glasses

I was asked recently what I thought the biggest change had been in wine fashion in the past five years. My answer was unequivocal: sales of pink wines. From being a niche that expanded and contracted with the sunshine, rosé has subtly but steadily become a stalwart of many merchants’ ranges, with Provence firmly at the top and asked for by name.

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