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No Christmas cheer for restaurant and pub groups

Published:  19 January, 2018

Restaurant and pub groups across the UK recorded a marginal decline in sales during the festive season, with drink-led businesses claiming the best of the festive trade.

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Bier Huis signs exclusive distribution deal for Clover Gin

Published:  10 January, 2018

Bier Huis, the Ossett-based specialist beer, cider and spirits shop, has added Clover Gin from Belgium to its wholesale section as a UK exclusive.

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Majestic reports strong Christmas sales

Published:  09 January, 2018

Majestic Wine saw bumper trading over the Christmas period with group sales increasing by 3.2% compared to last year.

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Gin sales boom with 45% growth at Christmas

Published:  04 January, 2018

Gin was the runaway success of the last minute Christmas booze run, with shoppers buying a huge 45% more in the week before the big day than 2016.

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Looking ahead: David Gleave MW, managing director, Liberty Wines

Published:  19 December, 2017

With the all-important Christmas trading period underway - and hopefully turning passion into profit for the UK’s wine and spirits operators - we at Harpers are looking ahead past New Year to see what’s in store for the trade in 2018.

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Enough of the Millennials, what about us?

Published:  18 December, 2017

It is with us at last. The wonderful Christmas and New Year period when wine drinkers empty their wallets and flash their contactless cards with gay abandon. Filling their cars, kitchens and cellars with bottles, these treasured consumers keep our businesses afloat, at least for a few more months.

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Looking ahead: Troy Christensen, CEO, Enotria and Coe

Published:  18 December, 2017

With the all-important Christmas trading period underway - and hopefully turning passion into profit for the UK’s wine and spirits operators - we at Harpers are looking ahead past New Year to see what’s in store for the trade in 2018.

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The WSTA guide – what you need to know and what you need to question about the forthcoming budget

Published:  15 November, 2017

Budget speak explained by the WSTA

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Virgin Wines adds boozy crackers and baubles to Christmas menu

Published:  31 October, 2017

Virgin Wines has taken Christmas gifting to a new level beyond the advent calendar with the launch of Prosecco, wine and gin Christmas Crackers and Boozy Baubles.

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Trade prepares for premium push on Christmas wines

Published:  30 October, 2017

For most in the drinks world Christmas trade – the eight weeks or so leading up to the nation’s fuzzy wake-up call on January 1 – is a crucial period in the annual sales calendar.

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How consumer on-trade spend could top 2016 this Christmas

Published:  13 October, 2017

Forecasters are predicting that bars and pubs could be set to exceed last year's Christmas takings, despite continued “shaky” consumer confidence post-Brexit.

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Looking ahead: James Hocking, director of wine, The Vineyard Cellars

Published:  30 August, 2017

With the autumn tasting season soon upon us, as the trade prepares for the run up to the all-important Christmas trading period, Harpers is running a web series asking leading voices in the trade what trends and challenges they’re expecting to face in the latter half of 2017.

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Looking ahead to the Xmas run up: Richard Cochrane, MD, Felix Solis UK

Published:  21 August, 2017

With the autumn tasting season soon upon us, as the trade prepares for the run up to the all-important Christmas trading period, Harpers is running a web series asking leading voices in the trade what trends and challenges they’re expecting to face in the latter half of 2017.

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Pernod aims to grow "massive" uplift in Christmas spirits with two premium focused campaigns

Published:  17 August, 2017

Pernod Ricard kicked off its Christmas briefing strategy this morning with a reminder of why Christmas is the most important period in the trade’s calendar.

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Aldi trials craft wine range in lead up to Christmas trading period

Published:  27 September, 2016

Aldi is trialling a new 'craft' wine range in 50cl stubbies in effort to attract more millennials over the Christmas trading period into the wine category.

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Take a trip down memory lane with Harper's Quizmas Quiz

Published:  05 December, 2014

It has been a long and emotional 2014. Can you recall the rollercoaster ride of drinks trade happenings?

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Christmas Report: Gin is a must-have festive tonic

Published:  05 December, 2014

Once the preserve of the stockbroker set, recent years have seen gin reach a much younger and more fashionable audience. Helen Arnold assesses whether gin can stay on its upward journey

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Christmas Report: Champagne still a staple at any Christmas table

Published:  05 December, 2014

When it comes to celebrating in the Champagne category it pays to have a story, to be different and to stand out from the competition.

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David Gleave, Liberty Wines, and his key wine trends for Christmas

Published:  26 November, 2014

We believe Old World wines will continue to perform well this Christmas as people look to spend a little bit more and trade up to premium examples of known varieties. Alpha Zeta's Single Vineyard Pinot Grigio 'Terrapieno' from the Veneto is a good example of this.

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Christmas Report: time for big hitting whisky brands to shine

Published:  10 November, 2014

The whisky companies have been unveiling their big-hitting Christmas whiskies at a flurry of consumer shows in recent weeks, writes Dominic Roskrow, and it's clear that they're keen to cash in on the sector's current popularity by extending its appeal to new drinkers and attempting to be all things to all people.

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Christmas Report: how rum is spicing things up

Published:  10 November, 2014

Like the other spirit categories, the growth in rum is mainly driven by the premium sector. Spiced rum that is the latest big thing, with sales growing by more than 21% year on year, making it worth an annual £80m. It appears to be particularly popular in Scotland, where it accounts for over 21% of value sales, and at the younger end of the market, while well-aged rums are finding favour with a more discerning, 30-plus audience. Helen Arnold reports.

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Christmas Report: how vodka can drive festive profits

Published:  10 November, 2014

Vodka commands the lion's share of the spirits sector, with over 30% of total sales; not only is it the most widely drunk spirit in the UK, but it is outstripping the overall spirits sector, with annual growth of 4.4%. Helen Arnold reports.

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Christmas Report: why wine has reasons to be merry

Published:  10 November, 2014

It's that time again. With more than a third of wine sales coming through in the 12 weeks of Christmas, the trade is nervously checking the weather forecast and gauging the mood among consumers as shoppers prepare to fill their stockings, writes Gemma McKenna.

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Christmas Report: why premium spirits are key for festive sales

Published:  07 November, 2014

Premium spirits are a crucial selling feature of the festive season. Helen Arnold explains why:

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Christmas part 2: Key players weigh up the role of sparkling wines as the festive season approaches

Published:  07 October, 2014

The festive season is still the key trading period for sparkling wines. What do producers, brand owners, multiples and merchants expect from sparkling wines this year?

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Christmas Part 1: How bubbles are trending in the lead up to Christmas

Published:  06 October, 2014

A celebration is nothing without a bottle of bubbly and Christmas is no exception. In the UK Prosecco and Cava remain strong, as consumers favour other sparklers over costly Champagne.

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Pernod Ricard releases host of gifting options to boost Christmas sales

Published:  29 September, 2014

Pernod Ricard is planning to plug the "multi-million pound wine and spirits Christmas sales gap" it has identified with one-off releases and gifting sets.  

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Hospitality industry to create 6,000 jobs for young people by Christmas

Published:  25 September, 2014

The British hospitality industry will create 6,000 new jobs for 16 to 24 year olds by the end of the year, says the industry's trade association.

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Tesco cuts prices on top wines ahead of Christmas rush

Published:  26 August, 2014

Tesco is cutting prices on a range of top wines as it starts clearing warehouse stock ahead of the Christmas rush.

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Pernod Ricard calls for premium wine and spirits push in impulse for Christmas 2014

Published:  21 August, 2014

Pernod Ricard UK is aiming to cash in on millions of pounds of lost sales in premium wines and spirits in the impulse sector this Christmas by helping retailers encourage customers to trade up.

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Christmas Cheers

Published:  15 November, 2013

In the second of our major reports on key trends for the Christmas drinks market, we look for festive cheer in the spirits and Champagne categories.

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Spirit Supplier Views

Published:  14 November, 2013

Views from: Gillian Gibson, global brand manager, Balblair; Roy Summers, head of category management, First Drinks; Simon van Moppes, commercial director, Pernod Ricard

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Christmas Champagne

Published:  14 November, 2013

Nobody loves Champagne quite as much as the British, writes Anne Krebiehl. Françoise Peretti - director of the Champagne Bureau, the UK office of the Comité Interprofessionnel du Vin de Champagne - even refers to an "enduring love affair".

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Champagne Supplier Views

Published:  14 November, 2013

Views from: Keith Isaac MW, general manager, Champagne de Castelnau Isaac; Andrew Steel, co-founder and director, Connoisseur Estates,

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Christmas Spirits

Published:  14 November, 2013

From awkward December dalliances at the company party to toasting Christmas pudding on the big day, spirits play an important role in the 21st-century Christmas. Lucy Britner looks ahead at what tipples will be being tipped this year.

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Champagne Retailer Views

Published:  14 November, 2013

Views from: Ben Stephenson, managing director, Hangingditch, Manchester; Tracy Ford, BWS category director, Asda; Laura Jewell MW, Tesco

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Spirits Retailer & On-trade Views

Published:  14 November, 2013

Views from: Sukhinder Singh, Whisky Exchange; Simon Van Moppes, Pernod Ricard UK; Mal Evans, Mojo bars in Manchester

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Port & Sherry Supplier Views

Published:  07 October, 2013

Views from: Jim Grierson, on-trade sales director, Maxxium UK (Harveys); Tony Brown MW, Boutinot (Wiese & Krohn Port); Anthony Habert, UK marketing manager, Sandeman Port; Mark Symonds, marketing controller, Port and Madeira, Fells (Symington Family Estates); Damian Carrington, sales and marketing director, Fields, Morris & Verdin (Lustau, Quinta de la Rosa); Jeremy Rockett, marketing director, González Byass; Jackie Brown, senior brand manager, Maisons, Marques et Domaines (Ramos Pinto); Andrew Hawes, managing director, Mentzendorff (Fladgate, Hidalgo).

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Sparkling

Published:  07 October, 2013

Traditionally sparkling wine and Champagne were considered special purchases and were strictly reserved for high days and holidays when there was something to celebrate, such as weddings, Christmas and birthdays. However, sparkling wine is increasingly becoming the drink of choice in a far wider range of social situations, and occasions, be it simply enjoying a meal or drinks with friends or family and is often selected in preference to still wines.

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Port & Sherry Buyer & Sommelier Views

Published:  07 October, 2013

Views from: Gyles Walker, wine buyer, Morrisons; Hal Wilson, managing director, Cambridge Wine Merchants; Rémi Cousin, assistant head sommelier, the Fat Duck; Andrea Briccarello, head sommelier, Galvin La Chapelle.

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Fortified

Published:  07 October, 2013

Port continues to show resilience in the UK, with sales growing by value in a stagnant wine market. For Mark Symonds of Fells (Symington Ports), the category's price hierarchy is a key positive, with products available from cheap ruby through LBV, aged tawnies and colheitas, single quinta vintage and traditional vintage.

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Sparkling Producer & Supplier Views

Published:  07 October, 2013

Views from: Damian Clarke, managing director, Freixenet; Christine Follador, marketing and sales manager, Follador; Massimo Tuzzi, chief international officer, Zonin; Jon Sampson, prestige and portfolio brands director, Bacardi-Martini; Carolyn D'Aguilar, brand manager, Codorníu; Canti; Gavioli Gian Paolo, Cantine Maschio; Gianluca Bisol managing director, Bisol Prosecco.

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Sparkling Buyers Views

Published:  07 October, 2013

Views from: Matthew Henning, Hennings Wine Merchants; Ruth Yates, Corks Out.

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