French distributor BBC Spirits has bolstered its portfolio with several UK spirits brands as it bids to drive growth in 2021.

The Peroni Libera 0.0% logo will take pride of place on Aston Martin Cognizant’s new Formula 1 car this season as part of a multi-year sponsorship deal. Drinks International caught up with Richard Ingram, global brands director at parent company Asahi Europe & International, to learn more about its plans for the partnership.

Moët Hennessy has purchased a 50% stake in Jay-Z’s Armand de Brignac champagne brand for an undisclosed sum.

Diageo launches Tanqueray 0.0%

22 February, 2021

Diageo has launched a 0.0% abv version of its Tanqueray gin brand in a bid to capitalise upon soaring demand for alcohol-free drinks.

Kevin O’Gorman has unveiled his first Midleton Very Rare expression since taking over as master distiller at Irish Distillers.

Campari Group has reported that net adjusted profit decreased 24.4% year-on-year to €202.1 million in 2020 as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic.

A new non-alcoholic drink that taps into growing consumer trend for enjoying “aperitivo hour” has launched in the UK and international markets.

Drinks International caught up with Gabriel Bidault of online retailer Le Millésime Paris to learn more about the impact that accepting Bitcoin as a payment method has had upon the business during the prolonged bull run of 2020 and 2021.

Hard seltzer brand White Claw has launched its Mango variety in the UK through supermarket chain Tesco.

Moët Hennessy has launched Cuban rum brand Eminente in the UK, France, Germany and the Czech Republic.

UK port sales soar in 2020

11 February, 2021

Port sales in the UK saw impressive category growth throughout 2020, with the largest volume of off-trade sales since 2015.

A new premium cocktail delivery service called Canvas has launched across the UK this February in partnership with a series of top end bartenders.

Class Bar Magazine has launched a new website which will provide the latest news and insights into the UK bar industry.

Australian vermouth brand Regal Rogue has launched a new bartender training initiative in collaboration with The Liana Collection, the brand’s newly appointed UK distributor in 2021.

Heineken has announced plans to cut 8,000 jobs as part of an organisational restructuring effort designed to save €2 billion by 2023.

New HMRC figures show that a record number of distilleries were registered in the UK in 2020, growing by more than 100 in 12 months to surpass 560.

The Tales of the Cocktail Foundation has joined the Hospitality Recovery Coalition, which advocates for legislation to support the on-trade in light of the economic impacts of COVID-19.

Tanqueray has kicked off a raft of innovation by launching a Blackcurrant Royale variant made with French blackcurrants, vanilla and black orchid.

Martin Miller’s Gin has unveiled a new ad campaign that tells the story of the brand’s “transformation from a mad idea to a genius gin”.

The UK hard seltzer market is expected to reach a value of £75m by 2023 according to a report commissioned by DRTY.

Freixenet Copestick cemented its status as the UK’s leading supplier of sparkling wine by increasing sales 21% over the Christmas trading period.

A Scottish gin producer has used augmented reality in a bid to create the “world’s coolest labels” for its range.

The Worshipful Company of Distillers has announced a new programme of scholarships and bursaries for more than 100 students over the next three years.

William Grant & Sons chairman Glenn Gordon was Britain’s second highest taxpayer in the last financial year, according to the Sunday Times Tax List.

An activist investor in Stock Spirits has once again called for chairman David Maloney and senior independent director John Nicholson to be removed.

Premium rosé, ecommerce and innovation in packaging will form the bedrock of Foncalieu’s strategy as it bids to enjoy a strong commercial performance in 2021.

The latest edition of the UKHospitality and CGA Quarterly Tracker has revealed a 54% drop in sales for 2020 from £133.5bn in 2019 to £61.7bn.

Diageo managed to grow organic sales by 1% in the six months to December 31 despite suffering from restrictions on the on-trade and travel retail.

In May 2020, when the lockdown was still at its strictest in India, Sidecar bar in New Delhi received the good news that it was the only Indian bar to have made it to the coveted 50 Best Bars in Asia list.

A luxury online wine retailer has enjoyed a surge in demand after the value of Bitcoin increased by around 1,000% between March 2020 and January 2021.

Ardbeg 25 Years Old has become the oldest expression to join the Islay distillery’s permanent range.

Ibiza-based mobile bar company Southside Bars is now offering online cocktail masterclasses.

Remy Cointreau has reported 25.1% sales growth for the final three months of 2020.

A new hospitality support initiative has launched called A Shot In Time, which seeks to raise essential funding for the UK hospitality industry which has struggled financially since last March.

The Portman Group has warned the trade not to stock a CBD infused gin from Silent Pool called Colorado High.

Pernod Ricard has ramped up its focus on the low-alcohol category by launching 20% abv variants of Ballantine’s Scotch whisky and Beefeater gin.

The Drinks Trust has appointed Troy Christensen as its new chair of the Board of Trustees as well as three new patrons in Ian Burrell, Becky Paskin and Jaega Wise.

Walsh Whiskey has appointed six new distributors in Eastern Europe in a bid to capitalise upon strong growth in the region.

Global drinks industry data provider IWSR has purchased consumer insights firm Wine Intelligence for an undisclosed sum.

Fever-Tree has been named the number one tonic brand for the seventh year running and after a flurry of arrivals in recent years, the category is looking a little more settled. It’s always been the one mixer a bar can’t do without and in 2020, true to type, every bar polled stocked tonic water.

Women of the Vine & Spirits (WOTVS), an organisation dedicated to empowering and advancing women in the industry, has launched an online hub called Badass Bartender.

U.S. online retailer Wine.com has revealed that revenue increased 119% year-on-year to reach $329 million during 2020.

Miami-based wine and spirits distributor Webb Banks has appointed industry veteran Jose Castellvi to the newly created role of vice president for travel retail and spirits.

Drinks producers will be forced to close their doors and lay off staff after the U.S. ramped up its tariff war with the EU, trade associations have warned.

Premixed cocktail specialist World of Zing managed to sell more than 650,000 drinks in 2020 after successfully pivoting towards the at-home market.

Somerset brewery Yonder has launched two seasonal beers featuring ingredients foraged in the local area.

Cocktail bar owners Allison Crawbuck and Rhys Everett have launched London’s first absinthe distillery in the heart of the East End.

Three-quarters of Brits say they prefer to drink at home, the Big Gin Report, an annual study conducted by Craft Gin Club, has found.

Hollywood star Mads Mikkelsen has resumed the role of a cycling philosopher in a new ad for Carlsberg 0.0.

The alcoholic drinks category led the charge as UK supermarkets enjoyed their strongest ever Christmas trading period, according to Nielsen till scan data.

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Nick Strangeway

Hacha leads by example

Back in 2002 celebrity chef Jamie Oliver launched Fifteen, a restaurant made up of a team of trainee chefs from underprivileged backgrounds.

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