From the first day of autumn to the last day of spring, we dream of summer: holidays, beaches, friends, family, Christmas, enjoying life. It’s also the busiest trading season for the drinks industry and the focus for our bumper Drinks Trade summer edition.
The summer of 2019/20 heralds in a new player; a brand new category has emerged, swept over the sea from the United States, called seltzer.
Lion is the first to play in this space with Quincy. Based on its success in the US, it’s a refreshment category disruptor. You can read all about it on page 38.
Quincy may come in handy as ammunition for Lion to battle with the behemoth that is the pending merger between Asahi and CUB.
As the magazine went to press the ACCC had postponed its decision on the acquisition for the third time. The $16 billion deal will shake up the beer category; however, there are concerns hotel ownerships within the business may adversely impact emerging players and craft producers accessing route to market. Jamie Cook discusses this on page 84.
Lion may have their work cut out for them in 2020, but they have an intuitive, forward-thinker at the helm. MD, James Brindley is our Viewpoint contributor and has headed up Lion for the past decade, overseeing impressive initiatives involving sustainability and diversifying into categories beyond beer such as craft spirits and seltzer – page 12.
Of course, we couldn’t have a summer edition without our annual Champagne and Sparkling Report on page 68. Further on the wine category, European-based Felicity Carter, editor of Meininger’s Wine Business International has penned a thought-provoking opinion piece exclusively for Drinks Trade. I urge everyone in the wine industry to read it on page 24.
For our international section we take a look at Asia, with a focus on China. We talk to a range of people based there familiar with the quirks of the region who give advice about how to get the most from this lucrative market.
We also interviewed an Australian in New York, Linden Pride about his café/bar Dante, recently crowned Best Bar in the World on page 28.
Finally, did your brand make the 100 Hottest Brands list? Through the combination of data from IRI research and the opinions of industry colleagues at the coalface we report on the ones to watch. Go to 100 Hottest Brands lift-out on page 35 of the Drinks Trade summer edition to find out.