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Paragon Brands has launched a new distribution partnership for its Dingle Spirits family of brands in the UK.

Brockmans Gin has secured a listing with Ocado as the consumer interest in super premium gins continues.

Just before Christmas a single bottle of Penfolds Grange 1951 became the most expensive Australian wine ever sold at auction, fetching a cool £44,000. It is interesting to note that the iconic Penfolds brand, beloved of fabulously rich oenophiles, sits in a portfolio alongside Blossom Hill White Zinfandel, the UK’s bestselling rosé. Boosting sales of both brands, positioned at diametrically opposing ends of the market, is the challenge facing Michelle Brampton, who has just taken over from Tom King as managing director for Europe at Treasury Wine Estates.

Brexit is “the most stupid idea” in British history and “a catastrophe for the country”, according to Austrian Wine Marketing Board head Willi Klinger.

Broadland Wineries is creating a sister company called Live Kindly Drinks, which will focus on alcohol-free drinks “with social benefits”.

Enotria & Coe has increased its stockholding and hedged further ahead currency-wise “to prepare for whatever form of Brexit the country takes,” according to chief operating officer, Jon Pepper MW.

The growing popularity of Seedlip helped Waitrose record stronger January sales than it saw in 2018. Spirits buyer John Vine told DRN: “Seedlip is doing phenomenally well for us and we had a really good January for spirits this year because of it. We are now looking at listing other alcohol- free spirits.”

Maverick Drinks has been appointed as the exclusive UK distributor for Israel’s first whisky distillery.

Treasury Wine Estates (TWE) has announced its first-half 2019 results with net sales increasing by "the largest organic growth rate in the company’s history".

The nation's love of pink drinks is driving sales of gin, rosé and  ”instagrammable” cocktail liqueurs, according to the latest stats from the Wine and Spirit Trade Association.

Vegan wines and a focus on organic and sustainable winemaking will be highlighted at this year’s Wines from Spain annual tasting event.

The UK beer market is experienced its fastest growth for 45 years, according to the British Beer & Pub Association.

Combined on- and off-trade sales rose 2.6% in 2018, with take-home leading the way with an annual sales increase of 4.7%. On-trade sales were up just 0.1%.

After a slow start to the year, with sales down 1.7% in the first quarter, the World Cup and the hot summer drove rapid growth in Q2 and Q3.

The BBPA said that the freeze on beer duty also helped sales increase in the fourth quarter.

BBPA chief executive Brigid Simmonds said: “Considering the heavy cost burdens the industry faces, it’s great to see beer sales doing the best they have for some years.

“A significant amount of the growth in beer sales in 2018 can be attributed to the England team’s performance at the World Cup and the good weather over the summer months.”

Beefeater is bidding to capitalise on the soaring popularity of flavoured gin by launching a new Blood Orange variant.

Berkmann Wine Cellars will reveal its new pricing strategy for 2019 and it has announced it plans to freeze prices until March 2020, to protect customers from “potential Brexit fall out”.

The Scotch Whisky Association has won a long-running battle to stop a German Distillery from using the name Glen Buchenbach for its single malt whisky.

The Wine & Spirit Education Trust (WSET) and International Wine & Spirit Competition (IWSC) have joined forces to celebrate their 50th anniversaries.

Greenwood Distillers has revealed its first release: a Scottish gin called Theodore.

Famille Oksen is bringing its range of ‘artisan craft spiced rum’ to the UK market.

Kopparberg has appointed former off-trade director Neil Robinson as its new sales director for both off and on-trade channels.

Glen’s Vodka has released two flavoured spirits, available now to the independent retail market.

The UK’s rare whisky auction market saw sales rise 62.7% to a record £40.7 million in 2018 as collectors snapped up more than 100,000 bottles.

Award-winning drinks design agency BD Creative has been renamed as Barlow & Co as it celebrates its 21st birthday. Abigail Barlow set up the firm back in 1998 and it has since worked with leading retailers including Asda and Spar, large global brands such as McGuigan and boutique producers like Jenkyn Place in Hampshire. We caught up with Barlow to find out her reflections on the past 21 years, her vision for the future and her advice for retailers bidding to create an exciting and visibly appealing wine range.

Pernod Ricard has reported a “very strong” first half-year global results, although UK sales dropped due to a change in strategy across its wine portfolio.

Tennent Caledonian Breweries has announced new appointments to its senior management team.

Kokoro London Dry Gin is introducing a range of three premium gin liqueurs with flavours from Japan.

Berkmann Wine Cellars is to become the exclusive UK agent for Italian producer Umani Ronchi.

Morrisons, The Co-op, Waitrose, Hedonism and Tesco were among the big winners as we rewarded excellence at the 2019 Drinks Retailing Awards at The Dorchester.

Brewdog has appointed ex-Red Bull managing director, Andy Shaw, to the newly-created role of CEO of Beer.

Bancroft Wines is adding the Barossa Valley winery Glaetzer to its growing portfolio of Australian producers.