2020 July

The Waitrose offer of a specially-curated case of South African wines at 25% off sold out within 24 hours.

Since lockdown began in March, the off-trade has absorbed around half the alcohol volume lost from the on-trade, compared to the same period last year.

Back in the Real World

31 July, 2020

A solitary tasting note sits on the shelf-edge of a promotional fixture.

At the end of May, news that Roger Ryman had died was met with an outpouring of shock and deep sadness.

McGuigan Wines has renewed its TV sponsorship with Timeless Entertainment on UKTVs Drama for a second year.

The renewed 12-month sponsorship deal, worth over £2 million, will continue to cover the Timeless Entertainment programming on UKTV’s Drama channel. Led by “an exciting new and disruptive creative” developed by agency 20something, the campaign will illustrate there are “No Drama’s, when you bring a McGuigan”.

The idents themselves play on the tropes of classic British Drama TV shows found on the channel, across a variety of sub-genres – thriller, disaster, espionage, scandal, law and crime, only to later reveal themselves as innocuous and drama-free scenarios, featuring people innocently enjoying a delicious glass of McGuigan, whether that’s with a Friday night take-away, cosied up on the sofa or socialising with friends over a long lunch.

Julian Dyer, chief operating officer for UK & Europe, said: “The renewal of the sponsorship is incredibly exciting for McGuigan. Last year’s sponsorship was a great success, with shifts in key brand metric such as brand awareness and consideration. We have taken learnings from last year’s creative and have developed an amazing disruptive new creative positioned around ‘No Drama’s, when you bring a Mcguigan’, we can’t wait to see it live.

“The creative was developed by 20something, who have been a great partner bringing the brief to life. The team at 20something from the start aligned themselves closely with the brand and worked collaboratively with us through the entire process resulting in an outstanding final product which is aligned to our consumer and the sponsorship platform. We are hugely confident that we will see even greater brand metrics shifts and growth versus last year, to say we are excited is an understatement!

Elliott Starr, Senior Copywriter at 20something said: “The wine aisle in the supermarket can be a daunting place for many people. A rushed decision on the way to a party where you might be hoping to impress can often result in paying over-the-odds for a prestigious-looking label with some fancy swirls on it. Or, worse, showing up with something deemed to be inferior. There’s a real fear about ‘getting it wrong’, it’s all a bit dramatic. If you buy a McGuigan, you know you’re getting something legitimate – all that drama disappears, hence, ‘no dramas, bring a McGuigan’.”

The sponsorship, which is now live, is expected to reach a total of over 20 million people across the country UK & Ireland. It will also be supported with a multi-channel campaign from TV and social, through to the point of purchase in store.

ABInbev released its second quarter results statement today and said the first half of the year tested the company in many ways but it is now “well-positioned for a strong recovery”.

Casillero del Diablo, Concha y Toro’s biggest brand, has announced a major TV push for its ‘Wine Legend’ campaign in the run up to Christmas 2020.

The deadline for independents to enter the 2021 Drinks Retailing Awards has been extended until Friday, August 7.

Brits consumed 1.3 billion litres of alcohol during the UK’s lockdown period, which was almost half the 2 billion litres recorded during the same period last year, according to data from Nielsen Scantrack and CGA. This is despite UK consumers spending an additional £1.9 billion on alcohol in supermarkets since lockdown began, as consumers shifted spend from pubs and restaurants.

Beer and spirits were the main contributors to the additional £85 million spent in the off-trade for the week ending July 18, although overall off-trade growth started to plateau as the on-trade picked up, according to the latest Nielsen data.

Amazon reaps BWS rewards

29 July, 2020

The market for in-home consumption of alcohol saw rapid growth across the board during lockdown and, with people being forced to stay at home, online was a natural beneficiary.

Silent Pool Gin has secured a new UK distributor.

Majestic Wine has confirmed plans for future growth - alongside revealing details of new stores set to open in 2020. The business said its experience of lockdown was partly behind the new strategy.

Waitrose is offering a specially curated case of South African wines at 25% off, for a limited time only in a bid to help support the industry.

Independent bottler That Boutique-y Whisky Company (TBWC) has revealed a plan to release batches on a quarterly basis.

Storywood Tequila has announced a new distribution partnership with Proof Drinks in the UK.

Budweiser Budvar is launching a new design across all its packaging.

Nisa is supporting its retailers with a range of cider deals to drive sales over the summer season.

The Portman Group has issued a statement in response to a new Government anti-obesity initiative, which aims to put calorie information on beer, wines and spirits labels. 

Japanese whisky producer Nikka has released two single malts finished in apple brandy barrels.

Czech beer Budweiser Budvar is launching a new design across all its bottles and cans.

Premium rum brand Equiano has signed a UK distribution deal with Spirit Cartel.

The closing date is fast-approaching for the independent categories in the 2021 Drinks Retailing Awards.

Didsbury gin has entered the RTD category with the launch of four canned versions a G&T, each featuring a gin from its range.

The founders of the sustainably-focused Calvados brand Avallen have launched a Seedrs crowdfunding campaign to raise £175,001 to expand the business.

BWS sales growth in the off-trade continued unabated in early July despite the reopening of pubs, bars and restaurants.

Buyers Guide to Cider

21 July, 2020

Over the past few months consumer trends have changed dramatically, with shops reporting a surge in demand for flour, pasta makers and bicycles alongside a drive towards online and convenience shopping.

One of the UK’s most well-known specialist beer shops has closed. Beer Ritz, in the Headingley district of Leeds, announced the closure on social media yesterday.

Gin producer Foxhole Spirits has entered the rum category with the launch of a brand called Mad City.