The National Association of Cidermakers has a new chair and deputy chair after Martin Thatcher’s reign came to an end.

Online retailer Rude Wines has launched a “cheeky duo” of own-label wines from France in a bid to inspire more consumers to choose quality wine.

Britain’s best beer retailers were honoured for their achievements in championing our country’s thriving brewing industry at an awards ceremony at the House of Commons yesterday.

Eighty-five per cent of BWS retailers expect trading this Christmas to be at least as good as last year, if not better.

Adnams has opened a pop-up shop in the centre of Chelmsford in Essex as it continues to expand its retail empire across East Anglia.

Hungarian wine could enjoy a revival in the UK after one leading supplier decided to champion the category through a range of branded and own-label wines.

Online retailer Beer Hawk is hiring 30 new staff and increasing storage capacity 10-fold to capitalise on the UK’s burgeoning love of craft beer from around the world.

South African producer Distell has identified the UK as a key region for growth and is expanding its British team, setting up a new head office in Richmond and bringing all its brand distribution in house.

More than 200 Bargain Booze and Wine Rack franchisees have seen their loyalty rewarded with shares in the business.

Porter is off to Amsterdam

Heineken’s UK off-trade sales managing director has been promoted to head up the business’ European off-trade division and will be replaced by Simon Amor.

English sparkling wine producer Chapel Down has grown sales by 26% in the past year, according to its interim results.

Pernod Ricard has launched a peated single malt whisky from Orkney called Scapa Glansa into the specialist retailer trade.

Harrods is axeing the fine wine and spirits department it unveiled in 2013 and replacing it with a 225-seat restaurant.

Aldi has teamed up with Denbies Wine Estate in Surrey to launch its first English sparkling wine.

Brockmans gin has secured its first national grocery listing as Marks & Spencer decided to stock the brand from this week in 134 of its stores.

The producers of Pinkster gin have released a fruit gin liqueur made with Suffolk quince and wild bullace foraged from the hedgerows of East Anglia. 

A canned beer has earned Camra’s accreditation for “real ale” for the first time ever.

Morrisons is giving students 10% off beer, wine, spirits and food in a bid to improve its sales and claw back market share.

Les Grands Chais de France has expanded its empire with the purchase of Bejot Vins et Terroirs, which owns 520ha of vines across some of France’s most prestigious appellations.

A successful summer drinks festival event saw BWS sales grow faster than any other category at Tesco and was the driving force behind the retailer’s best performance in two years.

A poor performance from Majestic’s B2B arm and from Naked Wines USA has led to the group delivering worse than expected profits, a trading update has revealed.

Australia is in the doldrums after slumping to its worst Olympics performance in decades and finishing 10th in the medals table.

Alcohol brands can be a force for good in the sporting world by supporting with sponsorships and the health lobby will struggle to ban this practice, according to the chairman of the National Association of Cidermakers.

The English wine industry’s biggest challenge is protecting quality and maintaining high standards as newcomers jump on the bandwagon, says a top producer. 

A quick look at the IRI figures for the top 10 bestselling wine-producing countries in the UK retail trade reveals a stark trend: the Old World is taking a battering and the New World is surging.

Market leader Australia is growing, along with Chile, New Zealand and Argentina, but Italy, France, Spain and Germany are all in ongoing decline.

The apple may have originated in Kazakhstan – via the Garden of Eden, of course – but many countries have claimed it as their own: to our Gallic cousins it’s as French as a beret-clad man eating a brie baguette, while there is nothing more American than apple pie. But the English might just have them all trumped as an apple is as quintessentially English as cricket on a village green, The Archers, drinking tea, moaning about the weather and queuing in an orderly fashion. “Few autumnal pleasures outshine sinking your teeth into the blushing virgin flesh of a sweet, yet ever so subtly tart, English apple,” gushes The Telegraph in a recent homage to the fruit. No wonder Adam found it so tempting.

Mateus is set it to be the next retro brand to recapture the hearts of the British public after reporting encouraging sales figures over the past year, according to distributor Sogrape.  

Pernod Ricard has warned that focusing on discounts on standard spirits rather than championing premium lines would spell bad news for the drinks trade this Christmas.

Burton MP Andrew Griffiths is stepping down as chairman of the All-Party Parliamentary Beer Group following his appointment as a member of the Government Whips’ Office. 

Heineken has splashed the cash to recruit Man Utd boss Jose Mourinho for a new TV ad to coincide with the new 2016/17 season.

The Bordelais are seeking to appeal to younger members of the UK wine trade by encouraging wine students to attend the upcoming Crus Bourgeois tasting in London.

The Wine Society’s head of buying Tim Sykes is stepping down from the top job after four-and-a-half years in charge to return to frontline buying.

The Wine Institute of California has spoken out to reassure the UK trade that it is not abandoning the UK market after news that the London office run by John McLaren and Venla Freeman is to shut.

Pernod Ricard has been a net beneficiary of range rationalisation at UK retailers as sales of premium brands are soaring, according to the firm’s outgoing chief executive.

An Australian red ale was crowned the world’s best beer for 2016 after an elite panel of judges re-tasted every gold medal winner from the International Beer Challenge.

The sixth Big Peat Christmas Edition will blend whiskies from all active distilleries on Islay, plus the long-closed Port Ellen.

A Glasgow off-licence owner who ran a illicit alcohol supply ring has been spared jail but given 200 hours community service and a 12-month prohibition order.

Diageo has hit out at the advertising watchdog after it banned a Captain Morgan ad for implying that alcohol can contribute to an individual's popularity or confidence.

Former Asda executive Barry Williams is joining Morrisons as trading director for ambient in February 2017 and will head up the beers, wines and spirits department.

Majestic Wine is shaking up its strategy to focus once again on exclusive parcels of wine in its stores and online.

Paul Schaafsma is stepping down from his role as chief executive at Accolade Wines less than a year after he was promoted to the top job.

Producers of Loire sparkling wine are gearing up for a push on the UK market in a bid to capitalise on the UK’s ever growing love of bubbly.

Sauvignon Blanc, Prosecco and Malbec have taken gold, silver and bronze respectively as the most popular wine categories among Aldi’s online shoppers.

Berry Bros is bringing three of life’s greatest pleasures – fine wine, gourmet food and good books – together in a series of in-store events.

Diageo’s pipeline of innovation coming out of its Guinness Brewers Project has continued with the launch of a rye pale ale.

Sales of beers, wines and spirits grew 3% and soft drinks sales were up 9.3% in the retail trade during the Olympic Games, according to Nielsen.

Scottish wholesaler Inverarity Morton has hired former Wallaces Express boss Brian Calder to conduct a full audit of the business with a view to improving its offering.

Retailers have been warned to be especially vigilant when checking IDs as more than 700,000 students aged 15-16 prepare to celebrate GCSE results week.

WKD is celebrating its 20th anniversary with a packaging makeover and the launch of two lower-calorie drinks in a bid to appeal to more 18 to 24-year-olds.

Bill Samuels Jr

The world’s largest bourbon producer has given Maker’s 46 an official UK launch to build on strong growth in the American whiskey category.

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