Rising to the Challenge

Countries are already warning pregnant women and those planning to become pregnant to avoid travel to affected areas, including popular tourist destinations such as Puerto Rico, the US Virgin Islands, Barbados, Brazil and Mexico. Kenya has even warned it could pull its team out of the Rio Olympics this summer due to concern over the virus’ spread.

On a brighter note, Canada’s duty free business seems to be performing well, buoyed by the rising power of the US dollar, which has encouraged US travellers to travel and spend north of the border. Back in 2012 the US and Canadian dollars were at parity, in February this year one US dollar was worth CAD1.39. Consequently, liquor sales at Canada’s duty free border shops were up over 12% in 2015, and an even higher 15% at the country’s airports.

This encouraging trend looks set to continue in 2016, but for all the reasons outlined above, the picture for the rest of the North American and Caribbean duty free liquor market is sadly not as rosy.


Fraternity Spirits will unveil a Special Edition Tequila Corralejo gift box at the IAADFS show.

The new gift box celebrates Tequila Corralejo’s 20th anniversary and features illustrations of the brand’s historic hacienda. Other products on the company’s stand will include the Mexican rum Ron Prohibido and the chocolate liqueur Horus.

“The Americas is an important region for us both domestically and in travel retail,” said Fraternity Spirits CEO Raffaele Berardi. “Sales of tequila in the Americas have generally been growing above the average of spirits for the past few years, and we are continuing to see that trend reflected in our own business.

“We have a strong portfolio of Tequila Corralejo products and have seen very encouraging results, so our aim [at IAADFS] is to continue this success and look for ways of expanding our distribution in the region.”


The Patrón Spirits Company is introducing new 1-litre travel retail versions of its core tequila line at the IAADFS show, replacing the existing 700ml and 75cl bottle sizes used in the channel.

The Las Vegas-based company will also highlight the ultra-premium Patrón en Lalique extra añejo tequila it unveiled at Cannes last year, priced at £4,950 per bottle and limited to 500 units. The spirit is packaged in a handmade Lalique decanter based on the weber blue agave plant the tequila is made from. Other recently introduced lines on show include the Patrón Extra Añejo 5 Años duty free exclusive and the Roca Patrón range.

Patrón duty free director for the Americas Stephane Gonzalez said: “Our main objectives this year are to present our new offerings, collaborate on programme ideas, and to communicate our excitement over our new 1-litre Patrón tequila bottle.

“Our objective is to see this [size] retailed at the same price as our current size bottle to offer consumers increased value for money.”

Gonzalez admitted currency fluctuations in the Americas were making the regional trading climate difficult. “Currency fluctuations are an ongoing challenge, but we’re fortunate that consumers look to the duty free channel, especially in periods of uncertainty—to find price promotions, incentives and gift-with-purchase offers. So fortunately we’re not as impacted as domestic retailers.”