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Waitrose has appointed a fourth Master of Wine, as Barry Dick joins the team as beer, wine and spirit bulk sourcing manager.

The Association of Convenience Stores (ACS) has rolled out a fresh campaign for Challenge 25, as it looks to support retailers and boost awareness among consumers.

Convenience symbol group Spar has revealed new UK-wide brand positioning, as it looks to champion the ‘local’ message.

Aldi has reported its “best ever” Christmas, as demand for its own-label premium drinks range boosted sales.

Close up of a red shopping basket in a supermarket aisle

Data from NielsenIQ suggests consumers are set to spend £6.8bn at UK supermarkets in the two weeks leading up to Christmas Eve, up from £6.7bn in 2020.  

Aldi has opened a pop-up Champagne bar in London, selling its Veuve Monsigny Champagne for £2.33 a glass. The venue, in St Christopher’s Place, is called Veuve and Aldi said it is the “UK’s cheapest Champagne bar”. It opened on Wednesday and will stay open until 11pm on Sunday 12 December.

Two men sitting on crates outside an old building

The team behind East London bars The Sun Tavern and Discount Suit Company will open their first bricks and mortar shop in early 2022.

illustration of groceries floating out of a computer screen

Ecommerce is expected to account for 38% of all UK chain retail sales by 2026, according to a new report.

Club Soda has released more details of its alcohol-free off licence, which is scheduled to open next week.

screenshot of Trade Store website

Spirits distributor Distilled Brands has launched an online trade store, as it looks to offer independent retailers low minimum order quantities.

Jonathan Miller in grey suit standing in a shop

McColl’s and Morrisons have agreed to increase the number of Morrisons Daily stores from 350 to 450 stores within 12 months.

Nisa has announced a raft of in-store alcohol deals to help retailers drive footfall and sales during the early festive period.

Waitrose has ended a trial of on-tap wine and beer refills, introduced as part of its wider Unpacked initiative to cut unnecessary packaging.

Wholesaler Bestway has announced a £250,000 Christmas campaign, called Your Home This Christmas.

Flavoured Alcoholic Beverages (FABs) were the only alcoholic drinks category to grow sales in the grocery channel during the 12 weeks to the end of October.

Majestic has lined up a national Christmas TV campaign, as it looks to make staff into “on-screen stars”.

Atopia

Club Soda, the organisation behind the Mindful Drinking Festival, has announced plans to open an alcohol-free off licence in London this December.

Tesco has opened its first shop without checkouts as it looks to offer consumers a “seamless shopping experience”.

The latest figures from Kantar suggest consumers limited their visits to supermarkets, as they looked to save fuel. The data also revealed that Christmas preparation has started for many households.

New research has suggested that a third (34%) of consumers have or are considering stockpiling for Christmas before the end of October.

Waitrose has reported a 50% increase in searches for the term ‘Christmas’ on its website, compared to 2020.

Deliveroo Hop

Deliveroo has launched a delivery-only grocery store in partnership with Morrisons.

The founder of Brighton’s Seven Cellars is set to open a second store, in the city’s mainline train station.

A perfect logistical storm is threatening to take the shine off the festive recovery. Nigel Huddleston reports on fears of drinks shortages

Sukhinder Singh Whisky Exchange

In late September, Pernod Ricard agreed to buy The Whisky Exchange. Lucy Britner talks to co-founder of the specialist spirits retailer Sukhinder Singh to get the details behind the deal

The first Just Plonk off-licence is set to open in Cheshire’s Alderley Edge next month, with plans for 15 more stores in 2022.

Actor Idris Elba and Connaught Wine Cellars founder David Farber will open a bar and shop in London’s King’s Cross next month.

Pernod Ricard has agreed a deal to buy specialist London spirits shop The Whisky Exchange.

Hardys wine loop tesco

Several drinks brands will be available as part of Tesco’s new reusable and durable packaging scheme.

Luvians bottle shop riesling

Luvians Bottle Shop in St Andrews has been crowned off-trade winner of Wines of Germany’s annual 31 Days of Riesling campaign.