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Here's what was making the drinks news on this day in years gone by

On March 1, Constellation Brands implemented a new business model for mainland Europe as it pulled out of distribution partnerships and took control in-house. But, it was not the only shake-up for the wine, spirits and beer maker. At ProWein 2014, Andy Morton sat down with Constellation's international general manager & senior VP, Philip Kingston, to talk about the company's expanding global ambitions, including a new tie-up in China for its Robert Mondavi brand.

Last month, Chris Losh was one of the experts on just-drinks' ‘state of the industry’ webinar. While the webinar looked at the drinks industry as a whole, Chris thinks the results provide plenty of food for thought for the wine companies of this world.

Constellation Brands is looking to extend the beer offerings from its Crown Imports joint-venture in 2012.

In its forthcoming review of alcohol advertising self-regulation, the Federal Trade Commission will look at digital and social media for the first time. Ben Cooper believes that, in spite of the industry expanding its codes to cover these media, the review may shine a spotlight on an area of particular sensitivity for the alcohol sector.

The UK soft drinks market grew by 2% in value in 2009, enough for sales in the on-trade to climb ahead of spirits to take the number two spot behind beer.

Yesterday (1 April) signalled both an end and a beginning for Maxxium, the global sales and distribution joint venture created by Beam Global Spirits & Wine, The Edrington Group and Remy Cointreau in 1999. In those ten years, the company has gained one partner - Vin & Sprit in 2001 - and lost two, with Vin & Sprit calling time last year, and Remy Cointreau pulling out yesterday. The two remaining members subsequently decided to pool their resources, rather than go it alone. Speaking to just-drinks, the MD for Beam Global's international operations, Donard Gaynor, and group sales and marketing director at Edrington, Bill Farrar, look back at the break-up process, and consider how the new Maxxium - of which they will be co-chairmen - will perform in the current economic climate.

Having seen Chile blaze a trail in export markets, Argentina is now asserting itself in the international wine market. Moreover, writes Chris Losh, while Argentina boasts many of the same positive attributes that have benefited Chile, such as a fantastic climate and plenty of investment, it has the scale to exceed even Chile's formidable performance.

Bacardi has been engaged in a legal battle with Pernod Ricard over the rights to the Havana Club trademark for years. But Patience Gould believes the US-based spirits giant is shooting itself in the foot, appearing to be a corporate bully while drawing attention to the primary characteristic that sets Havana Club apart from its own world-beating brand - its Cuban origin.

Dutch brewer Heineken is launching four more brands under its BeerTender home draught beer system.

The UB Group is considering selling a 26% stake, according to press reports

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