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British Bottle Company offers expert export service for UK drinks

Published:  25 September, 2014

The British Bottle Company is a new specialist export business dedicated to helping British drinks, including English wine, craft beers and artisanal spirits, gain distribution in key export markets around the world.

The start-up export business has already signed up 12 respected and, in some cases, established British drinks brands, and hopes to build its portfolio over the coming months and years.

The British Bottle Company has been set up by Red Johnson, who has given up a high profile television career, in which he can claim to have helped bring Masterchef and the Apprentice to our screens, but is well versed in the drinks industry being the son of acclaimed wine critic, Hugh Johnson.

Johnson has worked with his father, along with UK and English wine consultant, Mike Paul, spirits expert Ian Wisniewski and beer author Pete Brown, to build up its initial 12-strong portfolio.

The line-up of brands includes English wineries, Ridgeview, Digby Fine English, Hush Heath, Camel Valley and Hattingley Valley, the Otter and Adnams breweries, Henney's cider and Warner Edwards and Langtons Gin and Black Cow vodka.

Johnson is confident the huge interest in authentic British drinks brands in the UK can be replicated around the world. He explained: "This is an amazing and unprecedented period for the British drinks industry, with premium brands being in global demand as never before. I've spent the last ten months working with a fantastic team putting together a first class portfolio of British drinks brands."

The British Bottle Company is working closely with Fresh Marketing, which has many years experience in helping British food brands find key markets around the world, to plot the best route for its portfolio of drinks brands.

It can offer both a complete and tailored export service for brands depending on their resources and experience of working in overseas markets.

Johnson explained: "Even large producers can struggle to find the resources and expertise to manage export effectively. We essentially act as the in-house export team by managing the entire process, from strategy and sales to the nuts and bolts of export. It's all we do and we are out there in the market representing our suppliers all the time."

He told that he has just returned from a business tour of the United States where he was very encouraged by the "real interest" in British drinks.

Sam Lindo, winemaker at Camel Valley, explained why it had signed up to the British Bottle Company. "This unique approach is exactly what our fledgling industry needs to help us pool resources to enter new export markets. Red has a great team with a lot of experience in all aspects of export."

In his downtime Johnson can also be found standing behind the bar of his portable, pop up pub business, the Old Barn Door, which literally takes an old barn door around the country offering a rather different on-trade food and drinks offer at local villages or on beaches or riverbanks.

If you are interested in more information then contact Red Johnson on red@thebritishbottlecompany or visit