How will travel retail cope with the fallout of Covid-19?

Global travel retail was one of the leading lights of the spirits industry. However, the Covid-19 pandemic hit the channel hard and the impact is expected to last for several years. The Spirits Business asks how the sector can adapt to survive the crisis. *This feature was originally published in the September 2020 issue of The Spirits Business Not a lot compares to the hum of excitement that vibrates through a busy airport terminal. Families,…

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The trends shaping the vodka category

Authenticity, provenance and natural ingredients are pushing vodka back into the spotlight. And the big players are responding to changing consumer tastes with flavour innovations and lower-ABV offerings. *This feature was originally published in the April 2020 issue of The Spirits Business Once upon a time, vodka was all about smoothness and neutrality, dressed in a gorgeous bottle. Then came the wacky flavours, swiftly followed by their widespread withdrawal. And while gin took the limelight,…

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Beam and Tito’s vodka donate $1m amid covid-19 crisis

A number of drinks producers, including Beam Suntory and Tito’s Handmade Vodka, have made huge donations to charities supporting on-trade members affected by coronavirus. Together, Maker’s Mark owner Beam Suntory and US distributor Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits (SGWS) have contributed US$1 million to the USBG Foundation Emergency Assistance Programme and the Restaurant Workers’ Community Foundation. “The people of Beam Suntory and our colleagues at SGWS are passionate about helping support the bartenders, restaurant workers…

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Vodka needs ‘casual’ premiumisation to return to growth

Vodka producers must adopt a more “casual premiumisation narrative” and focus on provenance and the vodka soda serve to offset declines across the category, a leading analyst has advised. Vodka volumes declined 0.5% to 322.2 million nine-litre cases in 2018, according to data from market research provider Euromonitor. Speaking to The Spirits Business earlier this month, Spiros Malandrakis, head of alcoholic drinks research at Euromonitor, said the underlying cause of vodka’s year-on-year declines of late…

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Tito’s to ramp up travel retail presence in 2019

Texas-based Tito’s Handmade Vodka is planning to “further its success” across duty free in the Americas in 2019 after reporting double-digit sales growth in the market last year. The brand’s success in the channel was attributed to “ramping up visibility in airports and border stores and escalating activity with leading cruise lines”. Tito’s had permanent displays and wall bays at airports in Philadelphia, Newark, Orlando and New York, as well as a storefront takeover at…

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