Dear Client: Last month, more than 1,100 of Facebook’s 9 million advertisers participated in a boycott, pausing advertising spend on social media in an effort to push the platform to address the posts including hate speech and misinformation. Several bev alc companies joined the boycott, some of which have decided to extend the boycott, while … Continue reading “Companies Split on Social Media Boycott”

Dear Client: Celebrities get involved with bev alc brands in several different ways, from brand ambassadorship, to minority owner and creative director to founding member, and many celebs are working with brands in a combination of those roles.  “Celebrities as paid spokespeople for brands is an inherent part of the business, from coffee brands to … Continue reading “Rose and Tequila Categories “Uniquely Galvanized by Star Power””

Dear Client:Nielsen has broken down the COVID-era into three time periods: 1) COVID year-to-date, the first week of March to the present; 2) restricted living, the first week of March through May; and 3) re-opening, the first week of June through the latest time period. “Looking at just those more recent growth rates may be a … Continue reading “Consumers Settling into ‘New Normal’?”

Dear Client:In 2019, the top 10 US wine and spirits wholesalers represented more than 70% of US wine and spirits sales, and just the top three— Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits, RNDC/Young’s, and Breakthru Beverage Group— totaled $34 billion in sales. In response to increasing distributor consolidation, independent distributors are banding together to provide small to … Continue reading “Indie Distributors Band Together to Form National Network”

Dear Client: Spirits depletions were up 3% for the rolling 12-month period through June, a 40-basis point improvement over pre COVID (the 12-month period through February), according to recent SipSource data. Meanwhile, wine depletions were down 1.3% for the 12 months through June, but reported a 180-basis point improvement over the last four months.  That … Continue reading “SipSource: Wine & Spirits Consumption Increases During Pandemic”

Dear Client: Last week, C. Mondavi & Family Wine Company made its foray into the import category, acquiring French Blue Winery [see WSD 07-22-2020]. Your editor caught up with ceo Judd Wallenbrock to discuss the acquisition and how the company is dealing in the current environment.  COVID IMPACT NOT AS BAD AS EXPECTED. First we … Continue reading “C. Mondavi & Family CEO on Being “Aggressive” in Current Environment”

Dear Client: Promising development out of Europe today on the aircraft subsidy dispute (and potentially on the resulting retaliatory tariffs). Today, Europe’s Airbus said it is amending French and Spanish government loans by accepting higher interest rates in a “final” bid to settle the dispute, reports Reuters. “With this final move, Airbus considers itself in … Continue reading “Europe Shows “Good Faith” in Airbus Dispute, Takes Step Toward Ending Tariffs”

Dear Client: Grupo Cuervo reported a net sales increase of 25% and volume increase of 10.7% for the second quarter ended June 30, benefitting from COVID-era trends including RTDs, large pack sizes and the shift to off-premise.  The company was of course impacted by the closure of the on-premise channel worldwide for most of the … Continue reading “Cuervo: “We’re at the Right Place at a Really Tough Time””

Dear Client: The US Supreme Court has another retailer case to consider when session resumes this fall. Indiana-based retailer Lebamoff Enterprises has filed a petition for writ of certiorari in hopes the SC will hear its case for retailer shipping.  BACKGROUND. In January 2017, then Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder signed SB 1088 into law allowing … Continue reading “Michigan Retailer Shipping Case May be Headed to Supreme Court”

Dear Client:Personal drinks machine Drinkworks, the joint venture between Anheuser-Busch and Keurig Dr Pepper, today announced a licensing agreement with Heaven Hill Brands to create co-branded cocktail pods, marking Drinkworks’ second partnership with a spirits company. The partnership has been in the works for a little over a year now. “When Drinkworks was starting [in early … Continue reading “A-B’s Drinkworks Strikes Licensing Deal with Heaven Hill”

Dear Client: The coronavirus was barely a whisper in the US in January. By mid-March, on-premise operations were being shuttered across the country. Then just as there was a glimmer of hope for normalcy, COVID cases began rising, forcing states to shut back down and/or scale back reopening efforts.  We’ve rounded up all the latest … Continue reading “How Bars and Restaurants are Responding to Re-Closures”

Dear Client: States have implemented a host of temporary provisions loosening bev alc regulations to help the industry cope with the impact of COVID-19.  As part of Colorado-based Distillery 291 and LibDib’s online virtual conference series, C. Jarrett Dieterle, senior resident fellow at R Street Institute, a nonprofit public policy research organization, explored the changing … Continue reading “Navigating the Current Regulatory Landscape”

Dear Client: Wine and spirits represents just about 3% of Pacific Northwest-based (mostly beer) distributor Columbia Distributing’s total business, and growing. The distributor made its foray into wine and spirits after taking over Constellation Brands’ wine and spirits portfolio in addition to its beer in Washington and Oregon in 2018. Last week, Columbia expanded its … Continue reading “Columbia Distributing’s Wine Biz Doing “Exceedingly Well” in C-Stores”

Dear Client:Constellation Brands announced today it has acquired a minority stake in Paso Robles-based Booker Vineyard, a super-luxury, direct-to-consumer focused portfolio, fitting into Constellation’s wine and spirits strategy to focus on high-end and enhanced DTC capabilities. The agreement allows the potential for majority ownership in the future. No financial details were disclosed. Booker Vineyard released its … Continue reading “Constellation Takes Stake in DTC-Focused Booker Vineyard”

Dear Client:The on-premise accounts for about 20% of annual wine sales volume in the US. The channel may be small volumetrically, but it’s “very important for access and for margins,” particularly for small, premium wine brands, according to Rabobank’s recent Wine Quarterly. There has been some recovery in the on-premise already which is “encouraging, but the … Continue reading “Rabobank Doesn’t Expect to See COVID Recovery until 2022”