The federal government shutdown earlier this year did not hamper the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau’s crackdown on unlawful trade practices.

Treasury Wine Estates reported a net sales revenue increase of 12.5% in the Americas for the first half of fiscal 2019. The company’s US performance was affected by the recent overhaul of its route to market strategy and investments in creating their own merchandising and sales teams in the region.

A horde of craft distillers descended on Minneapolis this week for the American Craft Spirits Convention, aptly called Craft on Ice. Your editor was on the ground at the event to bring you the highlights and common themes from the convention.

The spirits category increased its market share for the ninth consecutive year in 2018, accounting for 37.3% in revenue market share and 35.3% in volume, according to the Distilled Spirits Council’s annual economic briefing this morning.

Distilled Spirits Council ceo Chris Swonger officially took the helm on November 12 [see WSD 10-17-2018]. Your editor sat down with the new DSC ceo in Austin, TX last week to discuss his new role and top priorities for the year.

In Kentucky, $2.3 billion in capital projects–including new distilleries, warehouses and tourism centers–are expected to be completed or planned by 2022, according to an economic impact report released this week.

Pernod Ricard reported 4% sales growth in the US for the first half of its fiscal year, which is in line with overall market growth, thanks in part to price increases on key brands.

Federal excise tax reduction is back on the agenda in Congress. The Craft Beverage Modernization and Tax Reform Act (CBMTRA) was reintroduced in the US Senate today by Senators Ron Wyden and Roy Blunt. Now they’re looking to make the tax relief permanent or at least extend it.

Constellation Brands has taken a minority stake in New York-based Black Button Distilling through its investment arm, Constellation Ventures, per a release. No financial details were disclosed.

The canned wine category has really taken off in recent years. In 2018 canned wine sales were up a whopping 69% and volumes were up 47% in all Nielsen-measured channels. Though it is still growing off of a relatively small base.

The Americas is the largest market for Campari, accounting for about 43% of total growth. As such, Campari America has repositioned itself in the last four years to support growth in the region, from expanding its portfolio through acquisitions, fully aligning with Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits in 44 markets, moving its headquarters from San Francisco to New York to establishing itself as a leader in the spirits marketing space.

Diageo ended H1 with US sales up 4.7% on an organic basis. The US portfolio is “much healthier” now, according to chief Ivan Menezes, with Johnnie Walker and Ketel One Botanicals particularly doing well.

Proximo Spirits, Cuervo’s US subsidiary, has named Michael Keyes as president and ceo, effective February 4. Michael will be responsible for all operations and its affiliates in the US and Canada.

Last week we reported that direct-to-consumer wine sales reached a record-breaking $3 billion from more than six million cases in 2018, according to ShipCompliant’s annual DTC report [see WSD 01-23-2019]. DTC wine shipments account for 10% of total domestic off-premise wine sales.

In 2018, total spirits sales were up 3.1% and volumes were up 1.2% in all Nielsen-measured channels.