2007 July

The Society of Independent Brewers has appointed its first chief executive to help raise its status and influence in the drinks industry.

Drinks producers have just over two weeks to submit entries to the 2008 Tesco Drinks Awards.

Tesco will list a broader range of single varietal wines from New Zealand as part of its latest category review. While the supermarket giant has added a number of Sauvignon Blancs, it will also offer a broader range of single varietal whites, including Gewürztraminer, Pinot Gris and Riesling.

Diageo has launched a £5 million marketing campaign to promote vodka brand, Smirnoff.

The Patron Sprits Company has signed an agreement with independent distributor Cellar Trends to sell its portfolio of spirits, including

In brief

27 July, 2007

Moet-Hennessey is launching Ardberg Mór - the world's largest bottle of single malt whisky. Costing £350, the 4.5-litre bottle is filled with 10

Getting into the spirit

27 July, 2007

With a major national advertising campaign and PR set to take hold in the UK, does rum finally stand a fighting chance? Laura Clark finds out

Diageo has appointed Dr Franz Humer as its new chairman.

Diageo is rolling out Morgan's Spiced Rum in revamped packaging.

Halewood International has repackaged its Red Square Vodka in a move to

How low can you go?

27 July, 2007

Changing consumer tastes are driving the market for sessionable beer, differentiated by lower alcohol or flavours, finds Christine Boggis

Beer in brief

27 July, 2007

Michel Roux (above, left, with John Grogan MP),

Magners is targeting 18 to 34-year-old drinkers with a sonic poster campaign, and is embarking on its first online push.

Carlsberg has launched a summer sampling campaign for Carlsberg Edge, which aims to introduce Edge to more than 85,000 consumers in eight weeks.

Scottish & Newcastle has reached more than 400,000 shoppers through its Biggest Round campaign, which has been running since the beginning of May and is to continue until the end of August, the brewer has said.

Courage is being relaunched with a £2 million investment, after Bedford-based Wells & Young's bought the portfolio in January this year.

Marston's has bought the Hampshire-based Ringwood

Pride of the north

27 July, 2007

After 160 years at the forefront of quality drinks retailing, Booths' key staff members celebrate by offering marketing tips and stock selection secrets, Laura Clark reports

Before you read this column, I'd like you to place your hand on your heart, mother's gravestone or

News in brief

27 July, 2007

Berry Bros

Cheshire-based independent wine merchant Corks Out has acquired a new sales director to help develop the business.

The low price of branded Champagne in supermarkets and multiple chains is leading to a boost in sales of own-label Champagne at independent wine merchants.

ANSWERS ACROSS: 1 Barrel; 4 Japan;

News in brief

27 July, 2007

A new wine company is hoping to lead the way in producing lower-alcohol wines and promoting responsible drinking. DB Wines was formed by a consortium of individuals and businesses from the American and European wine industry and the company has

Australian producer De Bortoli is taking on a Champagne brand in the UK as part of a strategy to source wines with a "unique story" from independent winemakers.

Vanessa Feltz - pictured with partner Ben Ofoedu - was named Rosé d'Anjou Queen of the Year at a party sponsored by the Loire Valley rosé. Glamorous drag queens and divas partied with big names from the gay community at London's Imagination Gallery, which was transformed into a rose garden for the event. Absolutely Fabulous actress Helen Lederer led an informal wine tasting, and guests were treated to an "eye-popping" cabaret courtesy of drag act The Globe Girls.

Booths has reported a 50 per cent growth in internet wine sales over the past year.

News in brief

27 July, 2007

Broadland Wineries has achieved Grade A standing

Tasting table

27 July, 2007

Wines to ward off the summer chill