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One in five off-licences targeted by Trading Standards officers in Warwickshire was selling alcohol suspected to be fake or illicit.

Sainsbury’s is tipping gin as a top-selling spirit this Christmas.

Morrisons is trialling a range of new initiatives to make its drinks aisles more accessible.

£10 fizz leads price charge

09 December, 2011

Asda was selling £10 bottles of Champagne this week as the supermarkets’ battle for hard-up consumers’ Christmas drinks budgets hotted up.

Oddbins is giving away turkeys this Christmas.

Majestic trials TV ads

25 November, 2011

Majestic is broadcasting its first ever TV ads in a pilot scheme to attract supermarket wine shoppers.

Wine Rack opens 21st shop

22 November, 2011

Wine Rack has opened a shop in Radlett, Hertfordshire – bringing its estate to 21 shops.

Oddbins is enlisting the help of consumers to select a mixed case of wines for Christmas.

Profits up for Majestic

15 November, 2011

Majestic has grown pre-tax profits by 20% to £8.8 million in the half-year to September 26 – but saw like-for-like sales in shops drop for the six weeks after the period ended, it has reported.

Stores are preparing themselves for a bleak Christmas as economic indicators show poor retail footfall and low consumer confidence.

Naked Wines has been named the UK’s Online Business of the Year at the National Business Awards 2011.

Supermarket trading slowed in October, suggesting that shoppers are holding off Christmas shopping in the hope of getting better deals closer to the festive season, according to Nielsen.

Oddbins has put three wines priced by its customers in a blind tasting on shelves today (November 4).

Wine Rack will fall short of its planned target of reaching 30 stores by the end of 2010.

The newly relaunched Oddbins chain is exploring sites as it considers expanding next year. 

Nicolas is gearing up for its annual wine and spirits fair on November 11-12.

Sun boosts drinks sales

14 October, 2011

September’s record-breaking temperatures have given the drinks sector a huge boost, pepping up a tough summer for sales.

Sainsbury’s new BWS chief has pledged to deliver more consistency across its retail channels and put a greater emphasis on consumer needs.

Drinks retailers remain attractive investment prospects despite the economic conditions, according to Majestic’s chief executive Steve Lewis.

Waitrose will be making its drinks range as diverse and premium as possible as it rolls out its Little Waitrose smaller-format convenience stores.

Sheffield wine merchant Michael Menzel has died aged 70, after a battle with cancer.

Retailers who benefit from the proposed minimum pricing legislation in Scotland should have a windfall tax imposed on them, according to a leading Scottish Conservative.

Alcohol Concern claims to have found a link between the density of off-licences and under-age drinking.

The government needs to do more to promote town centre shopping and place less emphasis on out-of-town retail parks, the Association of Convenience Stores says.

Shop rents are falling in real terms and landlords are taking an increasingly flexible approach, according to new data.

New buyer for Waitrose

03 August, 2011

Waitrose has created a new wine-buying role – responsible for Italian, bag-in-box, small bottle and low alcohol wines.

Pubs are closing at the rate of 25 a week, with off-trade competition blamed for much of the sector’s woes.

Spirited Wines – the chain that has taken over all the Nicolas shops outside London – has launched a mobile marketing campaign to raise its profile in mobile search engines.

Asda names new BWS head

15 July, 2011

Asda has appointed Tracy Ford as its new category director for BWS, replacing Adrian McKeon who was recently promoted to commercial director for grocery.

Cardiff independent wine merchant Ballantynes has closed after 33 years of trading.