December 22, 2008
just-drinks.com editor's weekly highlights
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Here we are, then, at the end of another year. A week of festivities and awkward conversations with rarely seen relatives beckons for many.
The festive period will see just-drinks descend into turkey-fuelled hibernation on 25 December. But we'll be setting our alarm clocks for 2 January to continue bringing you the latest and greatest from the world of drinks.
Some of you may have already seen the first of our reviews of the year for different sectors, which began with beer and spirits last week. We'll be publishing reviews of wine and soft drinks over the next couple of days.
As for 2009 (is anyone else struggling with the concept of 2009?), it looks like we're heading into an economic black hole. On that cheery note, we'd like to wish you all Merry Christmas and an enjoyable holiday period.
In the news last week, excitement abounded in the US soft drinks sector as the Food and Drug Administration gave the green light to newly developed sweeteners from the stevia plant.
US brewer MillerCoors also bowed to pressure from attourneys general in more than 20 US states and announced it would cut 'energy' ingredients from its Sparks drink.
Over in Europe, talk of widespread job cuts across the UK wine sector reached just-drinks' ears. There was also confirmation that England will not introduce a minimum price for alcohol, for now.
Meanwhile, UK firm Cadbury ended one of the worst kept secrets in business by announcing that it plans to sell its Australian drinks division, bringing to an end the company's 40 years in the soft drinks sector.
See you in 2009.
Until next time...
Olly Wehring, Managing Editor
Pernod Ricard’s unexpected move for Absolut in March set the tone for a year in which Diageo eschewed any significant acquisitions in favour of joint deals with existing brand owners. Olly Wehring reviews the major events in the spirits arena during 2008.
Protecting local markets, traditional names and long-established production methods have long been important elements of the international drinks trading system. However in recent years, efforts have been made to bring some order and liberalisation to what was once a plethora of local laws that restricted trade on the one hand, and allowed cheap shoddy copies of drink classics, on the other. Here just-drinks examines the state of drinks production and marketing laws worldwide and examines how governments and international organisations are trying to balance protecting excellence with the need to allow free trade and competition within the sector.
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