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March 20, 2020

Direct-to-consumer offers coronavirus opportunity for UK drinks companies – Wine & Spirit Trade Association – FREE TO ACCESS

In the week that the coronavirus COVID-19 took hold in the UK, the head of the country's Wine & Spirit Trade Association has told just-drinks that drinks companies should focus their efforts on direct sales to consumers.

By Giacomo Lee

In the week that the coronavirus COVID-19 took hold in the UK, the head of the country’s Wine & Spirit Trade Association has told just-drinks that drinks companies should focus their efforts on direct sales to consumers.

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In an exclusive interview, WSTA chief executive Miles Beale admitted the crisis will have a long-term effect on the UK on-premise channel. With the UK Government advising the public on Monday to avoid pubs and bars in the country, Beale forecast that the on-premise would not look “the same on the other side of coronavirus as it did before”.

“They [on-premise operators] are on the front line not only of the coronavirus, but also the fear of coronavirus,” Beale told just-drinks. “When we’ve got politicians saying don’t go out to restaurants, bars or pubs, demand disappears literally overnight. That’s certainly what’s happened for a lot of our members.”

When asked what type of drinks businesses could emerge unscathed from COVID-19, Beale said: “I think no one wins. I literally mean no one wins, because I don’t see any company coming out of this up.

“There are clearly some businesses that are better-developed than others in some areas,” he continued. “Any company that is able to offer direct-to-consumer sales is definitely going to be in demand. When we, God willing, come out of the other side of coronavirus, these companies are probably going to be in a good place to keep some customers that they probably gained in the short term.

“Business models are adapting and some will survive better.”

The WSTA has spent the last three-and-a-half years focusing its attention on the UK’s withdrawal from the European Union. “Challenges like Brexit were requiring some change anyway,” Beale told just-drinks. “But, this is a whole different ball of wax.”

To read just-drinks’ exclusive interview with Miles Beale, click here.

Coronavirus COVID-19 and the global drinks industry – just-drinks timeline

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Free Whitepaper
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What is the impact of China’s Zero-COVID lockdowns on economic activity, consumer goods and the foodservice industry?

While wanting to protect the country from being overwhelmed by Omicron, China’s adherence to a Zero-COVID policy is resulting in a significant economic downturn. COVID outbreaks in Shanghai, Beijing and many other Chinese cities will impact 2022’s economic growth as consumers and businesses experience rolling lockdowns, leading to a slowdown in domestic and international supply chains. China’s Zero-COVID policy is having a demonstrable impact on consumer-facing industries. Access GlobalData’s new whitepaper, China in 2022: the impact of China’s Zero-COVID lockdowns on economic activity, consumer goods and the foodservice industry, to examine the current situation in Shanghai and other cities in China, to better understand the worst-affected industry sectors, foodservice in particular, and to explore potential growth opportunities as China recovers. The white paper covers:
  • Which multinational companies have been affected?
  • What is the effect of lockdowns on foodservice?
  • What is the effect of lockdowns on Chinese ports?
  • Spotlight on Shanghai: what is the situation there?
  • How have Chinese consumers reacted?
  • How might the Chinese government react?
  • What are the potential growth opportunities?
by GlobalData
Enter your details here to receive your free Whitepaper.

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