Blog: Put a cork in it, Olly
Olly Wehring | 22 March 2007
Greetings from Portugal. I’m writing this blog en route from Lisbon to Porto, so forgive me if the handwriting’s a bit shaky. The sun is shining and the sky is blue, which may not be a big deal to those of you in the southern hemisphere, but I’m told it’s snowing in London today.
I’m over here as a guest of Amorim, the world’s largest cork manufacturer. Today’s been spent touring the cork forests, followed by a visit to the company’s production facility, which churns out around 850m corks a year. I’m trying to get my head round the scale Amorim has here, but it’s proving really rather difficult.
The closure debate has been raging for so long now, that even I have been known to roll my eyes and mutter “Here we go again”. Valid it may be, but cyclical and never-ending it most definitely feels.
One thing that I have had my eyes opened to today, however, is the sheer environmental sustainability of natural cork. The bark of the cork oak trees grows back and each tree is harvested every nine years. Not one crumb of cork is wasted – if it’s not used to make the actual corks, then it goes to flooring, sandals or even to fuel the furnace at the plant for boiling the bark itself.
Although I have the platform here to voice my personal opinions, my stand on closures remains open to persuasion. The effort and manpower needed to produce cork is staggering and it’s easy to ask “why bother”.
That’s a question I’ll be putting to Amorim’s chairman, Antonio Amorim, tomorrow when I interview him, so watch out for his response when the interview runs next week.
In the meantime, I obviously wish you were here – the weather’s lovely.
Some people in India believe alcohol should be more difficult to purchase. Last month, the state of Bihar halted all alcohol sales as its chief minister made good on an election promise. ...
Greetings from Zurich. Here as a guest of Heineken's Amstel brand, I'm due to sit down later today with the group's senior global director for international brands, Walter Drenth....
Drinks companies spend a lot of money on trying to predict trends. At last night's Worshipful Company of Distillers City debate, any strategists in the audience got a bit of forecasting for free....
I'll admit to being partial to an Aperol Spritz now and again, more usually in the summer months, sitting outside, shades on, slowly turning more golden/rusty....
- The category today - Scotch Whisky I
- Today's Market Trends - Scotch Whisky II
- Key Brands Performance - Scotch Whisky IV
- Tomorrow's Market Trends - Scotch Whisky III
- Category Innovations - Scotch Whisky VII
- Beam Suntory names CFO, makes structural changes
- Diageo to accept US$1m South Korea fine
- Analysts clash over AB InBev SAB Brexit impact
- Brown-Forman shuffles director pack
- Pernod switches Travel Retail Europe op's director
- Global Scotch whisky insights - market forecasts, product innovation and consumer trends
- Global RTD insights - market forecasts, product innovation and consumer trends
- Soft Drinks Global Overview: Growth Opportunities Between Category Lines
- Consumer and Market Insights: Wine Market in China
- Global travel retail insights - market forecasts, product innovation and consumer trends