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Licor 43 targets UK growth

Spanish liqueur brand Licor 43 is targeting UK growth, after up-scaling its marketing operations with the appointment of a brand ambassador.

Brugal repackages rum

Global: Edrington Group has repackaged its Brugal rum, Añejo. The new design is said to reinforce the brand’s authenticity and reputation as the only rum distilled, matured and bottled in the Dominican Republic.

BBPA lobby UK ministers over alcohol proposals

The British Beer and Pub Association (BBPA) met with the UK Home Office to air concerns over government proposals to change the Licensing Act.

Scotland: Diageo opens £40m distillery

Global drinks giant Diageo has opened the doors of its new £40 million distillery in Speyside, Scotland.

Minimum pricing for alcohol would land retailers £700m

The introduction of a minimum price for alcohol in Britain could see retailers and manufacturers reap £700m in extra revenue.

Champagne Jacquart enlists UK partners

Champagne Jacquart is to appoint Enotria as its exclusive UK distribution agent from October.

Amrut launches new single malt

Indian distiller Amrut has extended its range of whiskies with the addition of a three cask-matured single malt.

Prosecco ban progress in Australia

Italy/Australia: The Conegliano Valdobbiadene Prosecco Superiore Consorzio has welcomed a ban on Australian producers using the term prosecco, under new EU laws. The Consorzio has pledged to continue fighting to get the ban implemented in other countries that continue to make prosecco, like Brazil.

Lovedale Semillon scoops top award

McWilliam’s winery has won Best White Wine at the invitation only Tri Nations Wine Challenge. The contest featured wines from Australia, New Zealand and South Africa. The winery won Best White Wine of Show Trophy and Best Other White trophy for its flagship 2005 McWilliam’s Mount Pleasant Lovedale Semillon.

First Drinks appoints marketing boss

UK company First Drinks has appointed Una McCullough as marketing director.

Irish Distillers to roll out Redbreast 15 year old

Irish Distillers Pernod Ricard, producers of Jameson, is set to introduce Redbreast 15 Year Old Irish Pure Pot Still whiskey as a permanent expression within the range in key international markets including Ireland, USA, France and Germany.

Scotland: Minimum pricing rejected

Scotch whisky distillers have welcomed a vote by the Scottish Parliament Health & Sport Committee to remove minimum pricing from the Alcohol (Scotland) Bill.

Only 10 brands earn Elite status with The IWSR’s Elite Brands 2010

The number of brands meeting the criteria of The IWSR’s Elite Brands has fallen from 22 in 2009 to just 10 in 2010. Ukrainian vodka Nemiroff has taken the top spot.

India: Amrut launches 'intermediate sherry matured' whisky

Indian distiller Amrut is to launch its first ‘Intermediate Sherry Matured’ whisky. The product will be a limited edition of 275 cases.

J Wray & Nephew makes new appointments

Jamaica: J Wray & Nephew, owners of the Appleton Estate Jamaica rum brand, has announced the expansion of several roles within the international division.

Campari to acquire Carolans, Frangelico and Irish Mist

Gruppo Campari has signed an agreement to acquire Carolans, Frangelico and Irish Mist from William Grant & Sons for €128.2 million.

International Cider Challenge results 2010

The results of the International Cider Challenge 2010 are in. This is the first year of the competition and it attracted over a hundred entries. Drinks International recruited a panel of cider experts to blind taste the ciders, which were then awarded trophies and medals.

Beefeater gin gets ready for winter

Chivas Brothers has launched a winter version of its Beefeater gin brand.

Diageo launches Baileys hazelnut

Diageo has launched a new flavour of its cream liqueur brand Baileys.

Champagne Mumm goes gastro

UK: Champagne GH Mumm has launched a campaign to reinforce its links with food. The Pernod Ricard brand is to partner selected restaurants as part of a UK-wide marketing campaign to celebrate its traditional links with gastronomy.

Foster's rejects wine offer

The Foster’s Group (Foster’s) board of directors has rejected an offer for its Treasury Wine Estates. Foster’s received an “unsolicited expression of interest” from an international private equity firm to acquire the wine assets of Treasury Wine Estates. The proposal involved a cash consideration of between $2.3billion and $2.7billion for 100% of the assets.

Martini goes for Gold with Dolce & Gabbana

Bacardi Global Travel Retail has launched a new expression of its Martini vermouth. Martini Gold is a collaboration between Italian designers Dolce & Gabbana and the Martini brand.

Brown-Forman releases 2010 Birthday Bourbon

Old Forester has released the 2010 expression of its vintage-dated “Birthday Bourbon”. The drink was released in honour of George Garvin Brown, the founder of Louisville-based Brown-Forman and Old Forester. First launched eight years ago to commemorate Brown’s Birthday on September 2, Old Forester Birthday Bourbon is a limited-edition bourbon which is released annually.

Scottish Labour says no to minimum pricing

Scottish Labour’s Alcohol Commission has rejected the Scottish National Party’s (SNP) proposal for minimum pricing.

Pernod completes Ambrosio Velasco sale

Pernod Ricard Espana has completed the sale of its shares in Ambrosio Velasco to Diego Zamora for a total price of 32.4 M€ in cash.

Foster's CFO steps down

Foster's Group has announced that Angus McKay, chief financial officer (CFO) has submitted his resignation and will depart Foster’s towards the end of this year. McKay joined Foster’s in 2004 from Fonterra Australia and was finance director, Foster’s Australia, Asia and Pacific, before taking up the CFO role in January 2008.

Comolli resigns from Pernod board

Jean-Dominique Comolli has resigned from the board of directors at Pernod Ricard.

International Beverage wins 49 medals

International Beverage Holdings is celebrating 49 awards in various international drinks competitions, including 13 awards in the International Spirits Challenge.

Glenglassaugh shows its spirit

The Glenglassaugh Distillery Company has launched a range of “Spirit Drink” products. The aim is to give malt whisky fans the opportunity to sample the evolution of the spirit that will eventually become whisky.

Amarula extends Elephant research project

The not-for-profit Amarula Trust has committed to a further three years of financial support to the Amarula Elephant Research Project (AERP) under Prof Rob Slotow of the University of KwaZulu-Natal.

Glenmorangie launches new whisky

Glenmorangie has launched a new whisky in its Private Edition range. The Glenmorangie Finealta, pronounced ‘Finalta’, is Scottish Gaelic for ‘elegant’. It is a recreation of Glenmorangie based on a recipe dating back to 1903.

Diageo appoints new board member

Diageo has announced the appointment of Lord Mervyn Davies of Abersoch to its board, effective September 1 2010. He is to be appointed as a non-executive director and his responsibilities will include membership of the audit, the nomination and the remuneration committees.

Australia: Nixon steps down from Foster's board

Australia: Former police chief commissioner Christine Nixon has stepped down from the Foster’s Group board.

Moscow: Vodka sales banned between 10pm-10am

Russia: Moscow is to ban sales of vodka between 10pm and 10am, according to reports.

Bushmills announces competition finalists

Bushmills master distiller Colum Egan has announced the names of the nine contenders who will represent their countries in the international finals of its competition.

Maker's Mark enjoys Travel Retail push

Beam Global Spirits & Wine is to push its Maker’s Mark brand in travel retail. A new campaign, created to enhance the travel experience, aims to raise awareness for Maker’s Mark amongst passengers and encompass advertising, in-store education, secondary displays and exclusive travel retail gift packs.

Bacardi appoints new EMEA head

Bacardi Limited has appointed Stefan Bomhard to the role of regional president of Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA). He is to be responsible for this area’s commercial operations.

Australia: Carlton to continue selling Asahi beer

Carlton & United Breweries and Asahi Breweries have extended a long-term exclusive licence for Carlton to sell and market Asahi Super Dry in Australia.

Plan Bee for Banrock Station

UK: Constellation Europe’s Banrock Station brand is to launch special edition wines to help preserve the British bee population.

New Zealand cocktails go to UK

New Zealand/UK: NZ based ready to serve cocktail company VnC is to launch in the UK. The company has signed a distribution deal with Whyte & Mackay to launch into the UK market.

Scotland: Highland Park launches 1970 Vintage

Highland Park has launched the third bottling from the distillery’s Orcadian Vintage Series - a 1970 Vintage.

Russian Standard rolls out music promotion

UK: Russian Standard Vodka has launched an on-pack music promotion. Consumers will have the chance to win free tickets to music gigs as part of the Russian Standard Vodka Originals brand campaign.

Bruichladdich to make gin

Islay: Bruichladdich distillery has started to produce gin. The Islay distillery, usually associated with peaty whisky, began making its first batch of gin today (3 August).

Barbados/UK: Mount Gay launches new rum

Mount Gay rum has launched a new 'rare cask selection', called 1703.

European court rejects AB InBev’s bid for Community Trade Mark

An attempt by AB InBev  to register the Budweiser trademark  as a Community Trade Mark within the EU has been rejected by the European Court of Justice.

Stock launches 21 year old Czech whisky

Stock Spirits has launched a 21 year old  single malt Czech whisky. The company believes it to be the only Bohemian single malt in the world.

Bacardi elects new board members

Bacardi has announced two new board directors, Francisco V Carrera-Justiz and Theodore C Walker, who were elected at the company’s AGM in Hamilton, Bermuda.

Beam sells German brands to Henkell

Beam Global Spirits & Wine, the premium spirits business of Fortune Brands has announced plans to divest three of its German-market local brands. Kuemmerling bitters, Fûrst Bismarck korn/schnapps and Jacobi 1880 brandy are to be sold to Henkell & Co, the second largest distributor of wine and spirits in Germany.

Graham Beck dies

Graham Beck, the name behind one of South Africa’s best-known wine brands, has died aged 80.