December 2008 management briefingMost certainly the biggest story in the spirits industry, like virtually all other industries, was the economic downturn that struck the world this year. Despite the claims of many spirits companies, that they offer “affordable luxury” with their products, trading down seems to be here to stay for the foreseeable future. For the wine industry, 2008 was not a year of huge deals and seismic shifts in the corporate landscape. Instead, the downturn made its presence felt, accentuating the pressures