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The best views and opinions in beverage industry publishing, all in one place, from beverage's monthly columnists and in-house experts.

Industry is following the pack to patriotic party

Samuel Johnson once said: "Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel." What does that say about Diageo, Anheuser-Busch InBev and The Coca...

Boom time for soft drinks in West Europe?

A mild start to the year in many West European markets, coupled with an earlier Easter, looks to have aided the fortunes of the region’s sof...

Inchdairnie and the quiet whisky revolution

Tucked in to a trading estate in the Scottish county of Fife, beside a local dry cleaning firm and a rubber moulding factory, InchDairnie Di...

Patron's lesson for the broader spirits sector

What is the best way to evaluate a spirits brand's performance? Is it all about volume? Is it about value? Or, is there more to it than that...

Will Ball Corp's patience for Rexam be rewarded with 2016 can bonanza? - Comment 12 May 2016

Richard Corbett

Like all mega takeover deals, Ball Corp's purchase of fellow can maker Rexam has been a long, drawn-out process. It was way back in February last year that the US$6.6bn agreement was first announced, and yet it took nearly a year to get the blessing of the European Commission.

Will Asia's brewers lead beer's next consolidation wave? - Comment 10 May 2016

Stephen Beaumont

This month, we welcome a new beer commentator to just-drinks. In his first outing, Stephen Beaumont considers whether Asia's brewers are best placed to feast on the scraps from Anheuser-Busch InBev's table as it devours SABMiller.

Do consumers care where wine brands come from or how they're made? - Comment 10 May 2016

Lucy Britner

I'm at something of a crossroads when it comes to knowing what it is that today's consumers - particularly Millennials - want to drink. On the one hand, the big spirits brands are targeting the demographic using heritage and authenticity while, on the other, Millennial wine drinkers appear to want their wine brands to keep things simple.

Is single malt really the Great White Hope for Scotch whisky? - Comment 5 May 2016

Ian Buxton

Although the global sales of Scotch whisky may have declined by around one quarter in volume terms in the past decade - slipping by 3% in 2014 alone, if you believe the optimistic statements of industry leaders, you'd be forgiven for thinking that all is for the best in this best of possible worlds.

Is the wine industry confusing its consumers? - Comment 3 May 2016

Chris Losh

This month, Chris Losh considers trends in the wine industry that risk at best confusing consumers or, at worst, alienating them altogether.

Where does Anheuser-Busch InBev see the future of beer? - Comment 28 Apr 2016

Andy Morton

Anheuser-Busch InBev had its general shareholders meeting this week, during what must be one of the busiest times in the company's history. With management flying all over the world - be it picking through the details of the SABMiller takeover or snapping up more craft brewers - it's a wonder they had a moment to spare for shareholders.

Brown-Forman's march on premium whisk(e)y - Comment 28 Apr 2016

Lucy Britner

Yesterday's acquisition of single malt Scotch whisky producer The BenRiach Distillery Co is the latest signpost on Brown-Forman's path into premium spirits territory. 

Are consumers getting tired of consuming? - Consumer Trends 26 Apr 2016

Ben Cooper

In this month's Consumer Trends spotlight, Ben Cooper examines consumption itself and asks whether government statistics in the UK published earlier this year, coupled with observations by the head of sustainability at Ikea, signify slowing demand for consumer goods.

What effect would a sugar tax have on India's burgeoning soft drinks category? - Comment 21 Apr 2016

Richard Corbett

Soft drinks marketers are always scratching their heads trying to establish new refreshment occasions for their drinks to exploit. Sometimes, these opportunities can be found in the most extraordinary channels. In Southern India, for example, salons have proved to be a surprise outlet for lemon & lime drinks like Sprite or 7 Up.

How can gin stem the slide in the US? - Comment 19 Apr 2016

Richard Woodard

Much as all looks rosy in the UK, the gin sector has struggled in the US in recent years. What is the segment doing wrong, in a spirits market that offers generous bounty? Richard Woodard investigates.

Who cares if Anheuser-Busch InBev buys more craft brewers? - Comment 14 Apr 2016

Andy Morton

This week, Anheuser-Busch InBev bought another US craft brewer, Devils Backbone.

The blurred lines of drinks categories - Comment 12 Apr 2016

Ray Rowlands

This month, soft drinks commentator Ray Rowlands  takes a look at the intriguing world of cross-over beverages.

Is the wine industry guilty of talking only to itself? - Comment 5 Apr 2016

Chris Losh

As long-standing a wine commentator as Chris Losh has seen trends come and go. But, how successful has the wine category been at following - or even setting - these trends?

Why spirits marketers should be proud of their luxury efforts - Comment 31 Mar 2016

Ian Buxton

Earlier this month, at the annual CAGE conference in London, LVMH CFO Jean-Jacques Guiony presented an eye-opening look at how the luxury goods category operates. What can the spirits category learn from Guiony’s observations? Ian Buxton takes a look.

What will a UK sugar tax mean for soft drinks producers? - Comment 29 Mar 2016

Richard Corbett

This month, Richard Corbett considers the impact of a sugar tax on the UK CSD market.

The growing importance of the convenience channel to drinks companies - Consumer Trends 24 Mar 2016

Ben Cooper

When drinks executives see references to 'disruptive influences' in retailing, they may well brace themselves for an uncomfortable haranguing about binge-drinking in pubs or town centres. It might come as a relief, then, that a new report from KPMG Boxwood on the retail sector in the UK refers to what other analysts might call market 'drivers'.

Is Pernod Ricard's Absolut dying in the US? - Comment 22 Mar 2016

Richard Woodard

This month, white spirits commentator Richard Woodard considers the present health - or lack thereof - of Pernod Ricard's flagship vodka brand, Absolut.

The death of carbonated soft drinks, but the fizz lives on - Comment 17 Mar 2016

Ray Rowlands

This month, soft drinks commentator Ray Rowlands takes a look at how various beverage companies are still keeping bubbles alive, despite the on-going decline in the world's carbonated soft drinks markets.

Is Heineken risking its brand image with new H41 beer? - Comment 17 Mar 2016

Andy Morton

It takes a lot for Heineken to meddle with its hard-won brand equity. So when it does, it's worth paying attention to the reasons why.

Is the end nigh for Sauvignon Blanc? - Comment 15 Mar 2016

Chris Losh

This month, Chris Losh looks at Sauvignon Blanc, a varietal synonymous with - and dominant in - New Zealand. Has Sauvignon Blanc hit the top and had to stop?

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