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Duty escalator to blame for high alcohol prices - WSTA

The Wine and Spirit Trade Association (WSTA) has claimed that the Government’s wine and spirits duty escalator is to blame for UK consumers paying the fourth highest prices for alcohol in the EU.

WSET launches diploma in South Africa

The Wine and Spirit Education Trust is to roll out its diploma qualification to South Africa, via online distance learning. 

Mixed reviews of Vinexpo 2013 as Beynat bids farewell

Exhibitors offered a mixed appraisal of Vinexpo 2013, the last Bordeaux show of Robert Beynat’s reign as CEO.

WSTA reports negativity in UK drinks sector

Total alcohol sales continue to fall according to the latest Wine and Spirit Trade Association (WSTA) market report.

MBG buys Meyer‘s Bitter

MBG International Premium Brands GmbH has bought the liqueur maker E. Eduard Meyer GmbH from the Schwarze Schlichte group.

Edrington announces major investment

Edrington has announced plans to extend its international distribution network, taking control of operations in three continents.

New Champagne website

The Comité Champagne (the educational and promotional arm of The Champagne Houses & Growers’ Association) has launched its new official Champagne website: www.champagne.com.

WIRSPA relaunches

The West Indies Rum and Spirits Producers’ Association has relaunched its ‘Authentic Caribbean Rum' campaign.

Altia buys Larsen Cognac and Danish aquavit Brøndums

Altia, the Nordic-based alcoholic drinks group has bought the Larsen Cognac brand and the Danish aquavit brand Brøndums.

Diageo new appointments

Diageo has announced that Andy Fennell, chief marketing officer, will become president COO, Africa, reporting to Nick Blazquez, president Africa, Eastern Europe and Turkey.

UK RumFest returns

The UK RumFest takes place on Saturday 12 and Sunday 13 October at London's ExCeL exhibition centre in London’s Docklands

Ab inbev
AB InBev buys Corona owner for $20bn

AB InBev has successfully completed its buy-out of Mexican brewer Grupo Modelo in a transaction valued at USD$20.1bn

New €15m Licor 43 plant unveiled

Diego Zamora has responded to an upturn in sales with a new up-sized Licor 43 plant and headquarters in Cartagena, near Murcia in Spain.

Brands by Value: full results

Brand valuation and marketing company Brand Finance has compiled a ranking of the world’s biggest spirits by  brand value. Here is the top 50.

Wemyss announces new distillery

Wemyss, owner of independent bottler Wemyss Malts and blended malt whiskies such as The Spice King, The Peat Chimney and The Hive, has announced that final planning permission has now been granted for its new single malt whisky distillery and visitor centre.

McDonnell steps down from Patrón

The announcement yesterday of the appointment of Dave Wilson’s as Patrón Spirits’ new president of international operations and global COO, follows the surprise decision by John McDonnell to step down.

WSTA welcomes ONS alcohol statistics

The Wine & Spirits Trade Association (WSTA) has welcomed the latest figures from the UK government’s Office of National Statistics (ONS) showing that the majority of people are drinking within weekly guideline amounts and increased awareness of alcohol units.

China recognises Champagne

The Chinese government has officially recognised Champagne as a protected geographical indication.

Dron leaves William Grant

William Grant & Sons has announced that Gordon Dron, its managing director for Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) has decided to leave the company.

Paul Currie
Lakes Distillery to produce English whisky from December

The new £2.5m Lakes Distillery will become the first whisky operation in the Lake District in more than 100 years, when it opens in December.

Brands by Value preview

Brand valuation and marketing company Brand Finance has compiled a ranking of the world’s biggest spirits by  brand value.

LIWF exhibitors happy despite falling numbers

Exhibitors at London International Wine Fair reported positive experiences of the 2013 show, despite visitor numbers having fallen to around 10,200.

Buffalo Trace speaks out about bourbon shortage

Buffalo Trace says it will not reduce the abv of its bourbon to cope with stock shortages.

SABMiller reports strong progress

Global brewer, SABMiller, has reported group revenue growth up 10%, lager volumes rose 3% for the year to March 31 and the integration of the Foster’s business is ahead of schedule 

Diageo to replace strategy director

Diageo’s group strategy director is to retire. Jim Grover will leave the executive committee on June 30 and the business on September 30.

TFWA Asia Pacific visitor numbers up

TFWA has reported a 13% increase in visitors at this year’s Asia Pacific conference.

India heads for London International Wine Fair

India is to host a generic pavilion at the London International Wine Fair.

Hillebrand seals five year deal with Accolade

JF Hillebrand, leading logistics provider to the global beverage market, has clinched a five year worldwide freight services contract with Accolade Wines, the world’s fourth largest wine producer.

Sauvignon Blanc Day is May 17

This Friday, May 17, is the fourth annual Sauvignon Blanc Day.

South Africa expecting record vintage

The 2013 South African wine grape harvest season exceeded the expectations, according to Vinpro a service organisation for 3,600 South African wine producers.

McGuigan calls for new duty band

Neil McGuigan, recently voted the ‘World’s Best Winemaker (IWSC), wants the UK government to change the banding under which duty on wine is set.

Jancis Robinson receives freedom of the City of London

Master of wine, Jancis Robinson, has been made a ‘Freeman of the City of London’ and an ‘honorary Freeman’ of the Worshipful Company of Vintners.

Campari posts poor results in first quarter

Davide Campari-Milano SpA has posted poor results in first quarter ending March 31, 2013 which it states is mainly due to the ‘one-off’ destocking in Italy.

Number One Drinks moves into Japanese beer

Japanese whisky specialist, Number One Drinks Company has started  to distribute Japanese craft beer.

Valparaiso/Casablanca becomes a great wine capital

Chilean city and wine region,Valparaiso and the Casablanca valley have been voted into the Great Wine Capitals Global Network.

LWF returns to Olympia

The London International Wine Trade Fair is returning to Olympia in west London in 2014 and is going back to being the London Wine Fair.

Ivan Menezes
Ivan Menezes to replace Paul Walsh as Diageo CEO

Diageo will have a new leader at the helm within two months having announced Ivan Menezes will succeed Paul Walsh on July 1 this year.

SWA to challenge to minimum pricing decision

The Scotch Whisky Association (SWA) is to appeal against a Scottish Court of Session decision to dismiss its  petition for a judicial review of the Scottish Government's plan to introduce minimum pricing per unit of alcohol.

Court rejects minimum pricing petition

The petition by trade bodies against alcohol minimum pricing in Scotland has been rejected. 

Treasury’s EMEA appointments

Treasury Wine Estates (TWE) has announced two appointments to its EMEA senior management team.

The Millionaires' Club 2013 launches online

The Millionaires Club 2013, Drinks International’s ranking of the biggest selling brands in the global spirits industry, is now available to download.

Anivin appoints Bruno Kessler as president

Anivin de France, the Association Nationale Interprofessionnelle des Vins de France, the French trade organisation for Vin de France wines, has appointed Bruno Kessler as its new president.

New whisky company formed

A new independent blending and bottling firm has formed, following the de-merger of Douglas Laing & Co.

Birch to leave WOSA

Wines of South Africa has announced that Su Birch, its well known CEO, is leaving after 13 years.

Think Spirits to distribute Jose Cuervo in OZ

Casa Cuervo SA de CV has appointed Think Spirits to replace Diageo as distributor of its Jose Cuervo tequila portfolio in Australia.

New companies onboard for London 2013 event

A new UK wine trade event at London’s Royal Albert Hall has received backing from the industry, with KWV the latest to pledge its support.

House of Hine
News Comment: Hine Under the Hammer

A Cognac brand rarely comes to market, so the news that Hine is under the hammer has had commentators chattering over potential suitors. Hamish Smith looks at the possible runners and riders.

Wines from Rioja comes to UK

Wines from Rioja is to host its first generic tasting in the UK.

SAB announces changes at the top

SAB Miller executive chairman Graham Mackay has been diagnosed with a brain tumour. He underwent surgery yesterday - April 22, 2013, and will now embark on a course of treatment.

Patrón’s McDonnell hoping to solve Chinese tequila ban

Patrón COO and Discus president John McDonnell has told Drinks International that work continues to reverse the Chinese ban on some tequilas.