Dear Client:In 2018, cannabis sales in three US states topped $1 billion, according to BDS Analytics. California raked in $2.5 billion, Colorado at $1.5 billion and Washington brought in about $1 billion. BDS projects global legal cannabis spending to hit $41 billion by 2024, with the US being the largest market.  “While those numbers are big and … Continue reading “Cannabis Beverages a $1 Billion Opportunity by 2022”

Dear Client:You may have seen a couple stories from Wine-Searcher circulating over the last week or so about the supposedly nonexistent Amazon liquor store in Los Angeles, which would be in violation of California law that requires a retail outpost for liquor delivery operations. If you haven’t, here’s the deal: Wine-Searcher went looking for an Amazon … Continue reading “What’s Up with Amazon’s Alcohol Delivery Operation in California?”

Dear Client:Less than two months have passed since the Supreme Court handed down its decision in the Total Wine & More v. Tennessee case, striking down Tennessee’s residency requirement [see WSD 06-26-2019]. But it’s unclear how it may impact other alcohol regulations, like retailer shipping, moving forward. We recently spoke with Alex Koral, regulatory counsel at … Continue reading “Recent Supreme Court Ruling a Bedrock for Future Bev Alc Cases?”

Dear Client:Florida-based Orion Wine Imports ignited the interstate shipping debate in California last year, but the district court says the importer hasn’t provided enough evidence that the state’s alcohol shipping regulations are discriminatory. As such, last week a district court judge granted the state’s motion to dismiss the case, but gave Orion leave to amend. BACKGROUND. In … Continue reading “Judge Sides with California in Interstate Shipping Suit”

Dear Client:Throughout Wal-mart’s fight with the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission (TABC) to sell spirits in the Lone Star State, it seemed like the scales tipped in favor of the retailer. But yesterday, the Fifth Circuit said the district court “erred in its findings,” and is not wholly convinced that the state’s public corporation ban is … Continue reading “Appeals Court Rules Against Wal-mart in its Case to Sell Spirits in TX”

Dear Client:Treasury Wine Estates ended its fiscal year with net sales revenue up 9.4% in the Americas. In the US, the company delivered growth “despite the period of significant operational change within a US wine market that is challenging,” particularly in the commercial tier as retailers focus more on private label, said TWE chief Mike … Continue reading “TWE Chief Sees “Significant Opportunity” for Improvement in the US”

Dear Client:In the last couple years, several big companies have entered the cannabis business through various investments including the likes of Constellation Brands, Southern Glazer’s, Breakthru, Molson Coors and most recently the Arizona Tea maker. Meanwhile, other large beverage alcohol and other CPG companies are circling the space – not quite making a move, but … Continue reading “The Investment Risk in Cannabis is “Infinitesimally Low””

Dear Client:Yesterday, Oklahoma County District Judge Thomas Prince ruled that the state’s new alcohol distribution law, which requires the top 25 wine and spirits suppliers to offer their products to all wholesalers, is unconstitutional. BACKGROUND. In May, Oklahoma Gov. Kevin Stitt signed SB 608 into law, requiring the top 25 wine and spirits suppliers (by sales) … Continue reading “Oklahoma Judge Rules Alcohol Distribution Law Unconstitutional”

Dear Client:As part of Constellation Brands’ strategy to reshape its wine and spirits portfolio, the company announced it signed an agreement with Heaven Hill Brands to divest Black Velvet Canadian Whisky along with the brand’s production facility in Canada for $266 million. The purchase includes all the distilling operations, aging and bottling facilities and the remaining … Continue reading “Constellation Sells Black Velvet Whisky to Heaven Hill”

Dear Client:Nearly three years after Pennsylvania passed new alcohol legislation, international trade groups are speaking out against the “pricing flexibility” section, claiming it violates international law.  BACKGROUND. Previously, alcohol pricing in Pennsylvania was based on a set formula that starts with supplier price then tacks on markups and taxes, adding about 30% to the price by … Continue reading “Int’l Trade Groups Claim PLCB’s “Flexible Pricing” Model Violates Int’l Law”

Dear Client:The cannabis industry is on quite a growth trajectory as more states legalize recreational cannabis and more CPG companies invest in the space. BDS Analytics projects that global regulated recreational cannabis spending will hit $41 billion by 2024. Moreover, the US will continue to be the largest market. The total cannabinoid market (THC + non-THC … Continue reading “Coppola CEO: “If You Look at Weed as a Competitor, You’re Missing Out””

Dear Client:There are plenty of personal drinks machines on the market from Keurig to Soda Stream. More recently, companies have been looking at how to apply that tech to cocktails.For instance, Drinkworks is the joint venture between Anheuser-Busch and Dr. Pepper Keurig, that launched in late 2018. Touted as the “ultimate bar back,” Drinkworks launched … Continue reading “Is Beam Suntory-backed Bartesian the Next Big Personal Drinks Machine?”

Dear Client:This morning, Diageo announced the acquisition of a “significant majority shareholding” of UK-based non-alc spirits brand Seedlip. Seedlip was launched in 2015 by founder Ben Branson. In June 2016, Diageo-backed spirits accelerator program Distill Ventures took a minority investment in the non-alc spirits brand. This acquisition marks the first non-alcoholic brand acquired by Diageo through Distill … Continue reading “Diageo Takes Majority Stake in Seedlip, a Sign of the Times?”

Dear Client:Building a brand is one thing, but building up a category poses another set of challenges. Park Street put together a panel of brands at the recent Bar Convent Brooklyn that built up their respective categories. The panelists included: Branca USA ceo Steve Brecher; Tortoise & Volt Marketing & Ventures director Steve Luttmann (and Leblon … Continue reading “Behind Brands that Built Categories”

Dear Client:Now that the joint venture between Republic National Distributing Co. and Young’s Market officially closed [see WSD 08-01-2019], RNDC has named Jay Johnson as region president of Young’s Market, which is now a division of RNDC West. Jay joined RNDC in 1991 as evp of the South Texas market, and over the years has held … Continue reading “Jay Johnson to Lead Young’s Market Co. as Region President”