Debate over the impact of beer duty will rage on after economic secretary Chloe Smith agreed to hold further meetings with MPs who claim the tax is damaging the British economy.

Heineken will host a fan hub throughout the upcoming Olympic Games that will display fan content online and on outdoor TV screens across London.

Retailers can win a buying trip to Chile as part of a new promotion designed to promote Chilean wines in the UK.

Diageo is launching a Chinese baijiu white spirit in the UK market.

Wynchwood Brewery has launched two new fruit beers to satisfy consumer desire for flavoured drinks served over ice.

Darnley’s View has launched a new London Dry gin spiced with a blend of juniper, cinnamon and nutmeg.

Quintessential Italian lager Peroni Nastro Azzurro will be immortalised in its very own opera.

SHS Sales & Marketing has outlined plans for its assault on the imported lager category with the Czech brand Krusovice.

Harveys Bristol Cream has linked up with Sony to give away digital book readers in the first of two on-pack promotions for the sherry this year.

Czech brewer Budějovický Budvar can continue to use the Budweiser name on its UK beer after the Court of Appeal ruled in its favour this morning.

First Drinks is embarking on a new marketing strategy for its Zubrowka Polish vodka brand.

A Colchester-based wine merchant has set up a body that he hopes will bring together independent retailers around the country and give them a united voice.

A report by NHS Scotland has shown “no obvious change” in alcohol sales as a result of the ban on multibuy promotions on alcohol in Scotland.

Lewis: tough year ahead

28 June, 2012

Majestic chief executive Steve Lewis has warned that “next year will be as tough as the one that’s just finished”, despite turning in increased sales, profits and prices. The wine warehouse chain’s pre-tax profit for the 53 weeks to April 2 was up 14.5% to £23.2 million on a sales increase of 8.9% at £280.3 million.

The administrator for D&D Wines International has given up trying to sell the company as a going concern.

 ruling by magistrates in Leeds could alter the way licensing committees and other courts measure the suitability of garages for drinks licences.

Fraud or suspected fraud may have cost UK wine companies as much as £1.3 million since last May, the Wine & Spirit Trade Association has revealed.

The Jubilee gave retailers a sales boost in June according to the Confederation of British Industry.

Ireland’s C&C Group has said sales of Magners cider plummeted in the second quarter of this year because of the poor weather.

Malt whisky the Macallan has launched a new range exclusive to the UK – the 1824 Series.

Molson Coors UK has confirmed plans to reposition it Grolsch lager away from the mainstream premium lager category and into the booming world beers category.

The Portman Group is looking for a new chair for its independent complaints panel, which rules on complaints about irresponsible alcohol marketing.

Romanian wine exports to the UK nearly trebled in 2011, latest figures have revealed.

Kent’s Community Alcohol Partnership scheme is being rolled out across the county after successful pilot schemes in Edenbridge, Canterbury and Thanet.

Hastings, in East Sussex, is cracking down on alcohol-related antisocial behaviour and under-age drinking in a new Community Alcohol Partnership scheme.

The makers of a herbal liqueur have been asked to change their marketing because it made medical claims about the drink.

Bacchus wines scooped five trophies in the English & Welsh Wine of the Year competition, run by the United Kingdom Vineyards Association.

Naked Wines is investing £526,000 to help Marlborough winemaker Mike Paterson set up his own label.

New look for Echo Falls

20 June, 2012

Accolade Wines has given Echo Falls a new look as part of a year-long campaign for the brand with an unprecedented spend.

Rhythm & Booze’s new owner believes its plans for the chain could breathe new life into a “tired” high street off-licence sector.

Is your operation the best in the business? Then enter Off Licence News’s Drinks Retailing Awards and get the trophy and the recognition you deserve.

More indies at LIWF

15 June, 2012

The number of independent retailers visiting the London wine fair was up by 12% this year, while the number of visi- tors from off-licences was up 7%, according to organiser Brintex.

Online drinks retailer Slurp is to introduce daily deal promotions in a move it hopes will appeal to supermarket wine shoppers.

Online drinks retailers risk selling alcohol to under-18s because there are not enough policies and checks in place to prevent it, a new report has warned.

A new company has been set up to provide marketing and sales support to overseas craft brewers.

Heineken buys Stassen

15 June, 2012

Heineken has bought Belgian cidermaker Stassen in a move to boost its production capacity and bolster its new product development capability.

Diageo boss Paul Walsh has described a planned £1 billion investment in distilleries and warehousing as a “pivotal movement” in its participation in the global Scotch whisky market.

Wine and spirits prices have risen by more than twice the level of inflation in the past year, and sales are declining in shops, the Wine & Spirit Trade Association has reported.

Frosty Jack's ads banned

13 June, 2012

Three Youtube ads for Frosty Jack’s have been banned for appealing to under-18s.

Cockspur rum is introducing a spiced version in the UK, the first major product launch since the distribution rights switched to Whyte & Mackay in October 2010.

Oddbins is launching a national competition to find the UK’s best amateur wine tasters.

Chilean winery Santa Rita is looking for retail partners for sales of a wine to raise money for the armed forces charity Help for Heroes.

Miller Genuine Draft lager is being backed by new TV advertising and sponsorship.

Chilean wine brand Casillero del Diablo has launched a press and Facebook campaign based around the legend of the “devil’s cellar”, which is what the brand’s name means.

Brand Phoenix’s Etienne Dumont and First Cape brands will be the exclusive Champagne and wine sponsors of the Jubilee Family Festival which takes place in Hyde Park on June 2-3.

Lower-alcohol wine sales will grow but will never be a huge slice of the wine market, Wine Intelligence has predicted.

Champagne Jacquart is launching a cooler bag for the Queen's Diamond Jubilee and the picnic season.

Wells & Young’s marketing director Chris Lewis is to leave the business to set up his own marketing consultancy.

Visitors to the Taste of London festival will be able to try an unfiltered and unpasteurised version of Pilsner Urquell, the original golden pilsner-style beer from the Czech Republic.

OLN's Tim Atkin MW has won one of Wine Intelligence's 10 for 10 Business Awards.

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