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Alcohol duty frozen until 2024

Published:  22 November, 2023

Chancellor Jeremy Hunt has quelled fears of a second duty rise this year in this afternoon’s Autumn Budget, by announcing a freeze until August next year.


Diageo profit warning knocks European drinks markets

Published:  13 November, 2023

Diageo has issued an unexpected trading statement to warn that this year’s revenue and profit will be significantly lower than the group previously expected – a blow which has had a serious knock-on effect for the European drinks sector.


Drinks One to ‘revolutionise’ drinks brands’ path to market

Published:  01 November, 2023

New drinks agency Drinks One has launched an ecommerce arm aimed at both trade and consumer as part of its disruptive strategy to allow brands to bypass the traditional middleman.


Details of Wine Paris and Vinexpo Paris revealed

Published:  26 October, 2023

Increasing numbers of international producers are joining Wine Paris and Vinexpo Paris 2024 with both new attendees and a more extensive exhibition footprint driving up attendances.


Nick Gillett: Predicting the big Christmas spirits trends

Published:  16 October, 2023

When it comes to this point of the year, customers start turning their thoughts towards Christmas. I know we say this every year, but Christmas 2023 really is going to be one of the most important festive seasons of the last ten years. While a great season won’t solve the various problems put upon the industry by government (duty hikes, rail strikes, and soaring energy costs, to name but a few) it’ll certainly go some way to protecting against the inevitable quiet months in early 2024.


Permit Room

Published:  16 October, 2023

This November, UK restaurant group Dishoom will open Permit Room in Brighton – a standalone bar taking its influence from the permit rooms, beer bars and drinking holes of Bombay’s post prohibition-era of the 1960s and 1970s. The all-day bar-café will be heavily focused on the drinks offer, with a brand new cocktail and drinks list featuring alongside an all-new menu of ‘moreish drinking food’. Permit Room’s new home in the Brighton Lanes also harks back to Bombay’s original permit rooms in tucked away side roads, many of which are still open today.


Exclusive: BWS falls into sustainability perception gap

Published:  05 October, 2023

In many ways, alcohol seems to be ahead of the curve when it comes to sustainability agendas. Wine producers around the world work on nature’s front line and are among the few sectors to have successfully high recycling rates globally via glass. Spirits have been at the forefront of experiments with alternative formats and zero waste projects.


Jerry Lockspeiser: Growth is central to business strategy. Is it time to change?

Published:  27 September, 2023

Many years ago I was asked to act as a strategic consultant to a Chilean wine business. They wanted help with reformulating their strategy, first to achieve break even, then to reach sustainable profitability. The business was 100% targeted at export markets, with the UK a key priority.


Berry Bros. & Rudd champions sustainability pioneers with new Collective

Published:  11 September, 2023

Historic London-based merchant Berry Bros. & Rudd is revamping its spirits portfolio, with the launch of The Collective, a new annual release of spirits, which brings together a group of like-minded distillers.


Looking Back, Forging Ahead Q&A: Mark Bedford, Caviste and The Spirits Room

Published:  16 August, 2023

Midway through 2023, Harpers is taking stock of yet another turbulent year for the drinks trade, with plenty of highs and lows, so far. We continue our series with Mark Bedford, owner and director, Caviste and The Spirits Room, to find out how the year as gone so far, and what the remainder may bring.


Enotria & Coe welcomes new COO

Published:  15 August, 2023

Enotria & Coe has announced the appointment of Julian Momen as its new chief operating officer (COO), who has joined the company after holding several top jobs across the industry.


Looking Back, Forging Ahead Q&A: Matteo Furlan, The Dorchester London

Published:  14 August, 2023

Mid way through 2023, Harpers is taking stock of yet another turbulent year for the drinks trade, with plenty of highs and lows, so far. We continue our series with Matteo Furlan, head of wines, The Dorchester London, to find out how the year as gone so far, and what the remainder may bring.


Nick Gillett: How the duty rise reveals the lack of duty to business

Published:  08 August, 2023

It doesn’t seem to matter what flavour of government you have at the moment – when it comes to the spirits and hospitality industries, there’s a stench of incompetence. In Scotland we have the incredibly public failure of the DRS scheme, which, as a result, has wasted millions of pounds of taxpayers’ money. But don’t be fooled – it really is no better, south of the border. Westminster will raise you a cock up, in the form of the increased duty rates.


Over the line on duty

Published:  04 August, 2023

So, the deadline has come and gone – and despite an avalanche of criticism, including a letter sent by Hennings Wine owner Matt Hennings to his local MP in June, begging the government to wake up and smell the bonfire, the trade is now facing increases to the tune of 20% or 44p per 75cl bottle.


Looking Back, Forging Ahead Q&A: Vanessa Stolz, Restaurant Pine

Published:  02 August, 2023

Midway through 2023, Harpers is taking stock of yet another turbulent year for the drinks trade, with plenty of highs and lows, so far. We continue our series with Vanessa Stolz, head sommelier at Restaurant Pine, to find out how the year has gone so far, and what the remainder may bring.


Nick Gillett: How independent brands can influence customer behaviour

Published:  17 July, 2023

Influencing consumers is something that all spirits brands try to do but it’s harder than you think.


Harpers Design Awards 2023 open for entries

Published:  30 May, 2023

Submissions are now being invited for the 2023 edition of Harpers Design Awards, which is the leading competition of its kind in the UK market.


UK government overrules glass inclusion in Scottish DRS

Published:  30 May, 2023

The latest back and forth between the UK government and Scotland’s devolved powers has derailed plans for Scotland to include glass as part of a Deposit Return Scheme (DRS), with glass now to be fully excluded both north and south of the border.


Exclusive: Hallgarten to hold duty rise in bid to ease pain for trade customers

Published:  25 May, 2023

Faced with a significant duty rise from 1 August, many in the business of selling wine are bracing themselves for a new round of pain. Unwilling to pass on price rises to cash-strapped customers, but needing to protect already thin margins, this unpopular hike in tax is understandably the talk of the trade. And all of this is to happen at a time when implementation will impact on hospitality outlets, forcing a reorganisation of wine lists during the crucial summer trading period.


Despite ‘greedflation’ concerns, alcohol brand loyalty remains high

Published:  25 April, 2023

A majority of Britons believe companies are using inflation to mask price gouging. But despite price rises, loyalty to alcohol brands remains high, according to new findings by consumer research platform Attest.