Tag Archive | "beer"

JDO gives Baltika beer a new bottle design


One of Russia’s most popular beer brands, Baltika 3, is set to get a facelift with a new bottle design from JDO Brand & Design.

The Carlsberg-owned beer was aiming to elevate its position among international premium beers, while countering the threat of counterfeit beer products.

JDO was tasked with creating a more premium and modern design for the brand, retaining existing elements such as the label style and Baltika crest.

The result is described as a more contemporary, cleaner representation of Baltika 3. A deeper blue, an enlarged crest and a larger red hotspot all offer “a bold, confident and modern expression.”

JDO also added medal embossing around the neck to communicate brewing credentials and a strong ingredient story for the brand.

Paul Drake, JDO co-founder and executive creative director, commented: “The more defined structural profile delivers power, strength and masculinity to the brand, while the medal embossing and graphic detail cue authenticity and naturalness.”

Tatyana Chernaia, brand manager at Baltika, said: “JDO’s new design has succeeded in appealing to our existing loyal consumers as well as to a younger audience which will help establish opportunities for growth.”

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Crown Holdings designs new beverage can for Guinness


GuinnessCrown Holdings has designed a new limited edition packaging for Guinness Brewery’s Foreign Extra Stout brand of beverage.

Designed to celebrate Crown Holdings’ nearly 150-year presence in Singapore, the beverage is available in 330ml cans.

Foreign Extra Stout brand’s new packaging features a new version of the brand’s original label design developed by Singapore-based illustrator Ben Qwek.

The design also features typical Singaporean coffee shop sights and significant figures, such as Sir Stamford Raffles, placed against Guinness’ signature black background.

Crown Holdings Asia Pacific president Robert Bourque said: “Limited edition packaging offers a powerful marketing platform that brand owners can use to mark an important milestone, support a cause or create a tie-in to a larger campaign.

“Beverage cans are particularly well suited for promotional packaging due to the large billboard space available for messaging and imagery.

“In this case, we were able to work with Guinness to create a package that acknowledges the brand’s long history in the local Singapore market and injects some fun into the drinking experience.”

The company also said that the cans may be recycled numerous times without losing their physical properties.

In May, Crown Beverage Packaging North America designed a series of seven Coors Light Games Variable Print cans for the second annual Coors Light Games in Canada.

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Craft brewery’s edible six pack rings


brewery_makes_edible_beer_rings-1Most plastic beer six‐pack rings end up in our oceans and pose a serious threat to wildlife. Saltwater Brewery together with WeBelievers has designed, tested and prototyped the first ever Edible Six Pack Rings, made with byproducts of the beer making process, that instead of killing animals, feeds them. They are also 100% biodegradable and compostable.

Plastic rings holding six packs of beer in place can cause serious problems if they end up in the sea, endangering marine life with possible strangulation as well as posing a serious threat to wildlife.

We Believers and Saltwater Brewery, a small craft beer brand in Florida whose primary targets are surfers fishermen and people who love the sea, decided to tackle the issue head on and make a statement for the whole beer industry to follow.

“Together with Saltwater Brewery we ideated, designed, prototyped and manufactured Edible Six Pack Rings. A six-pack packaging design that instead of killing animals, feeds them,” said We Believers in a statement.

These six-pack rings are made from beer by-products during the brewing process, such as barley and wheat, and are safe for human and animal consumption as well as being 100% biodegradable and compostable.

The creators believe that, while production costs are currently quite high, they can be reduced if other breweries start to use them. In the meantime, they feel that many environmentally conscious consumers won’t mind paying a little more for this innovation.

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SABMiller packaging shows beer temperature


SABMiller-packaging-shows-beer-temperature_strict_xxlUK-based beverage company SABMiller has launched a new smart sensor technology that shows the perfect drinking temperature of beer.

Based on a colour-changing ink concept, the sensor is enclosed in a pack that accurately displays the beer’s temperature after a button is pushed.

The development is the result of a partnership between SABMiller and Germany-based Fraunhofer Institute.

The ink remains transparent at ambient temperatures and turns blue when the beer reaches the desired drinking temperature.

SABMiller global packaging manager and sensor technology creator Doug Hutt said: “The colour changing ink resonated well with consumers.

“The new smart sensor display system has taken five years to develop and is based around cutting-edge printed electronics (PE) technology, which allow the sensor, display and battery to be seamlessly integrated within packaging.”

SABMiller has patented the technology and expects to demonstrate its potential within the branded consumer goods sector over the next decade.

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Oregon to launch limited-edition brewing purées


mangoOregon Fruit Products has announced a timetable of limited-edition releases for its Fruit for Brewing range of fruit purées, specifically designed to be used by breweries in the beer making process.

For the rest of the year, and into next year, the company will launch four new fruit purées – starting with Mango this month. In the summer, it will launch a pineapple purée, followed by passionfruit and rhubarb variants for the autumn and winter seasons respectively.

The offerings are intended to provide craft brewers with the ingredients needed to create their own speciality fruit-infused beers, ciders and sour beers – a trend that the Salem-based company said continues to show growth within the craft beer industry.

“We continually hear from our craft brewing customers that they want new flavours on a frequent and rotating basis so that they may put their ingenuity to the test with new seasonal beers, ciders, and meads,” said Chris Sarles, CEO of Oregon Fruit Products. “With 14 mainstay flavours and four new rotating flavours, we can be a one-stop shop for breweries around the country of all sizes.”

Using fresh or frozen fruit in the brewing process is labour-intensive, costly and can lead to unpredictable results or introduce unwanted yeast strains into the brew, Oregon Fruit Products claimed. The company’s Fruit for Brewing line-up is aseptic, meaning they are flash-heated at ultra-high temperatures for a very short time to minimise microbes in the fruit purées. The product is cooled quickly to maintain the best fresh fruit flavour and colour. This process delivers a consistent year-round flavour profile that brewers can rely on. The entire process is closed, with the package filled and capped in a sealed environment, without letting any contamination enter the system.

The majority of Oregon Specialty Fruit purees have a shelf-life of 18 months in ambient temperature.

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Budweiser launches twist-off bottle caps


Budweiser_twist-off_capsAnheuser-Busch InBev’s beer brand, Budweiser has introduced new twist-off bottle caps for its product line in the UK.

The new caps are expected to eliminate the need for bottle openers, providing an easier serving experience.

Budweiser UK&I senior brand manager Aina Fuller said: “This is so much more than a packaging innovation for Budweiser – never again will consumers have to search high and low for a bottle opener, or battle to open bottles with their teeth.

“We’re proud to continue to lead the category in the UK by being the first major beer brand to bring twist-off caps to British consumers, ensuring they now never have to miss a minute of the action – like a goal in an exciting football match.

“We believe Budweiser Twist-Offs will position our brand as the only beer to enjoy during key occasions for our audience, across on and off trade.”

The new packaging will feature back labels, crowns and secondary packaging for all bottles, as well as paper neck labels for 660ml bottles.

The launch will be complemented by a multi-million pound campaign including TV and digital advertising, PR, social media, and in-store activations.

Budweiseris an American pale lager produced by Anheuser–Busch InBev. Introduced in 1876 by Carl Conrad & Co. of St. Louis, Missouri, it has grown to become one of the highest sellingbeers in the United States, and is available in over 80 markets worldwide.

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Grolsch appears in ‘modernised’ bottles


Cartils-Grolsch-Design-2016Branding and packaging design consultant Cartils has redesigned Dutch beer brand Grolsch’s primary and secondary packaging to bring its new brand platform, Unconventional by Tradition, to life.

Cartils has simplified and modernised Grolsch’s packaging while retaining the recognisability of the brand’s strong legacy and authenticity. Cartils simplified the logo design and made it more contemporary by removing the outline and shading effects and by using a more “serious” green, it said. The red heritage mark has evolved to convey the Grolsch Unconventional by Tradition brand story, two hops and a swingtop. The icon has also been made more prominent on pack with “elements of discovery” incorporated too.

The circular main shape has been simplified in an effort to connect to the past, and to the origin of the swingtop, while layered lines and storytelling details emphasise the lager’s premium cues. The white-based colour is more refreshing and differentiated, yet ensures beer-cues, Cartils said.

The secondary packaging has been given added authenticity, with both “craftsmanship and artistry” and “unconventional by tradition” supporting texts providing a confirmation of Grolsch’s soul and spirit.

“The new design,” Netherlands-based Cartils said, “is connected to the past, showing 400 years of authenticity but in an up-to-date interpretation.”

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Actega to provide PVC-free bottle closures for AB InBev


Screen-Shot-2016-02-04-at-16.25.13Anheuser-Busch has partnered with coatings and sealants manufacturer Actega to provide PVC-free bottle closure for the brewer to use in the Chinese market.

Actega will facilitate production of the PVC-free closure compounds by building an additional line at its site in Foshan, South China, extending its longstanding working relationship with US-based Anheuser-Busch.

As well as being PVC-free, the closures help to retain the taste of the beverage as they are specifically designed to prevent oxygen ingress in beverage products, even under difficult transportation conditions. At the same time, Actega said, they improve the retention of carbon dioxide inside the bottle and thus extend the beer’s shelf life.

Actega division president Dr. Roland Peter said: “We are looking forward to manufacturing our proven high-end products directly in China. This is an important new step in our long-term cooperation with Anheuser-Busch InBev.”

Anheuser-Busch is a brewing company founded and based in St. Louis, Missouri. Since 2008 it has been a wholly owned subsidiary of AB InBev. The company operates 12 breweries in the United States.

ACTEGA develops and produces specialty coatings, inks, adhesives and sealing compounds with a focus on the packaging, printing and medical industry. The business of ACTEGA is headquartered in Wesel, Germany, and operates manufacturing sites in Europe, the Americas and Asia.

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Ardagh launches new tapping system for in-home beer kegs


keg-image-hires-copyArdagh has launched a new tapping system for its 3.1 litre and 5 litre metal party kegs, together with plastics and injection moulding specialist KMT.

The new tap will “bring an exciting pub experience to any home-based celebration or occasion”, Ardagh has said. Newly designed features that provide a smooth “pull and tap” to consumers’ favourite beer or beverage will, the company stated, delight consumers and provide the beer and beverage industry with an opportunity to lift sales.

The easier and more professional way of serving a freshly tapped beverage gives the same tapping sensation as a draught beer, as the user pulls and then tilts the handle for a continuous beer stream. The stream can be adjusted steplessly and, for easy storage, the tap can be easily pushed back into the keg. The party kegs also come with a new venting mechanism. This airtight, resealable plug supports extended shelf-life of the beer for up to several days after opening.

Ardagh senior sales manager Klaus Jakobi said: “As our new party keg tapping system also enjoys all the intrinsic performance and environmental benefits of metal packaging, and can be further enhanced with our extensive range of in-house decoration, we believe that we can now offer a winning package to brands who want to increase their market share.

“Our recently conducted consumer research shows that this is exactly what they require from a modern keg.”

Ardagh’s range of kegs also includes the Top Keg Plus, available in 3.1 litre and 5 litre formats, with an integrated CO2 pressure control system to keep chilled beer fresh for up to 30 days. Both types of kegs can be filled on existing filling lines.

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Oculto presents new illuminated bottle design


Illuminated-bottleOculto, the unique tequila barrel-aged blend of beer and lager, has showcased two new interactive packaging innovations – including an illuminated bottle design and a web-based app utilising Internet of Things technology.

To create the illuminated bottle, the brand partnered with Inland Packaging to leverage smart label technology featuring printed electronic pathways, paper batteries, micro switches and LED lights with a pressure sensitive label design.

The pressure switch is placed where the thumb naturally falls while holding a beer bottle, and once pressed, the LED lights begin to shine through the eyes of the mask on the front of the bottle for about three to four seconds. The special edition bottle will be featured at select Oculto events during 2016, according to brand owner Anheuser-Busch.

In addition to the illuminating bottle, Oculto also unveiled a geo-targeted web application called Relics of the Night last November, marking the first time an Anheuser-Busch brand has used Internet of Things technology through bottle scan. It allowed consumers to scan the Oculto mask on their bottle, signage or napkin and upload their image to a specially created webpage at select events.

Once uploaded, consumers were given the chance to “spin the bottle” and win prizes including a $25 credit for car service, Minibar delivery, Oculto T-shirt, Miami Heat basketball tickets or a VIP table at LIV nightclub in Miami.

Both of these innovations would help to further characterise Oculto as a brand with a mysterious, seductive and intriguing personality, Anheuser-Busch said.

Oculto senior director Mallika Monteiro said: “With the original Oculto packaging, we focussed on creating a truly innovative bottle with a host of discoverable elements –everything from hidden messages on the back of the label to eyes that mysteriously appear when the bottle gets cold. Oculto’s unique positioning and social nature inspired both the illuminated bottle and the Relics of the Night digital activation to further highlight the personality and social nature of the beer.”

Inland packaging innovation director Tricia Sime added: “Inland is thrilled to partner with Oculto to create this innovative, illuminating bottle. This technology demonstrates how packaging and marketing can come together to bring consumers a full sensory experience.”

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Robust Performance by C&C Group


C&C Group, the Irish and UK branded cider and beer business, has increased operating profit before exceptional items by 9% to Eur111.2 million for 2012, despite a 4.8% drop in net revenue to Eur480.8 million. Operating margins improved to 23.1% up 2.9 ppts reflecting the group’s strategic focus on driving brand value and greater operational efficiencies. This operating margin improvement was achieved without reducing the level of brand investment, with C&C Group continuing to invest approximately 13% of net revenue behind its key brands.

The Magners brand delivered positive volume and revenue growth in the competitive cider market in Great Britain and export volume growth of 28% principally driven by North American and Australian markets. The Tennent’s lager brand grew operating profits by 22.5% in the year; with Irish volumes rising by 64%.

Although group volumes declined 10.5%, the positive impact of brand mix reduced the net revenue decline to 4.8%, on a constant currency basis. Both the Republic of Ireland and GB markets experienced on-trade volume declines as consumer sentiment remained weak, while continued off-trade promotional activity and the challenge of new entrants resulted in another competitive year across the cider and beer categories.

Stephen Glancey, chief executive of C&C Group.

However, the group’s well invested brands and market positions enabled it to grow operating profits in the year supported by tight cost control and ongoing innovation. In addition, the group improved its operational efficiencies by securing new third party packaging contracts.

C&C Group has also continued to expand its international cider business during the year with the acquisition of the Hornsby’s brand in the United States and with the contracting of new distribution agreements in key markets for its core Magners brand.

“This has been a robust year for the group,” says Stephen Glancey, chief executive of C&C Group. “C&C is now a focused cider-led LAD business. While we remain cautious about the near term prospects of our core markets, the continuing global growth of the cider category, and C&C’s unique position within the sector, underscore our belief in the prospects of our business. C&C’s balance sheet strength and free cash flow characteristics will enable us to capitalise on organic and acquisition growth opportunities.”

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St Austell Brewery Secures £40 Million Refinancing Deal


British regional brewer and pub operator St Austell Brewery has secured a new £40 million refinancing package with Royal Bank of Scotland and Barclays Bank. The Cornish brewer will use the new banking facility to explore further growth opportunities.

Focused primarily on the south west of England, the firm is keen to expand its pub estate. The refinance package will also enable St Austell Brewery to invest in its existing estate of 174 pubs and brewing facilities, while looking to develop new products to complement its award-winning portfolio of beers and ales.

Founded in 1851, St Austell Brewery has an annual turnover approaching £100 million and employs 1,000 people. “We benefit from a strong independent, customer-focused business model and see further opportunities to grow our presence in prime south west markets,” says Colin Stratton, finance director of St Austell Brewery.

Royal Bank of Scotland supplied a £10 million term loan as well as a £12.5 million revolving credit facility while Barclays Bank provided a £12.5 million revolving credit facility and working capital facilities of £5 million.

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Diageo Completes $225 Million Acquisition of Ethiopian Brewer


Diageo has completed the acquisition of Meta Brewery, a leading beer company in Ethiopia, for a cash consideration of $225 million, subject to customary post completion adjustments. The acquisition concludes a competitive tender process held by the Privatization and Public Enterprises Supervising Authority on behalf of the Government of Ethiopia.

The acquisition represents a key milestone in achieving Diageo’s strategy of participating at scale in beer and spirits in growth markets in Africa. Meta Brewery is the second largest beer company in Ethiopia with a volume share of approximately 15%. From its brewery near the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa, it produces and distributes its flagship national lager brands Meta and Meta Premium.

“Over the past five years, Diageo has invested more than £1 billion in building its businesses in Africa, and we will continue to look at opportunities to expand our footprint, grow our brands and secure strong routes to market,” points out Nick Blazquez, president of Diageo Africa.

The acquisition of Meta Brewery will give Diageo direct access to the rapidly growing Ethiopian beer market, and will complement Diageo’s existing premium spirits business in the country. The beer market in Ethiopia is estimated to continue to grow at more than 10% per annum to 2015, driven by strong GDP growth and increased disposable incomes. Diageo currently markets its international premium spirits brands, including Johnnie Walker scotch whisky, Smirnoff vodka and Gordon’s gin, through its representative office in Addis Ababa.

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Shepherd Neame Achieves Record Sales


Shepherd Neame, the Kent-based English brewer and pub operator, increased turnover by 5.2% to £121.3 million and operating profit before exceptionals by 3.3% to £12.3 million for the year ended June 25th 2011. The company’s total beer volume was up 4% against an overall decline of 7.1% in the UK beer market. Own beer volume rose 2.6% to 239,000 brewers’ barrels (68.9 million pints), aided by strong performances from the Spitfire and Bishops Finger brands. The majority of beer sales are in the UK although the company also exports to more than 20 countries including Sweden, Italy and Ireland.

 

Profit before tax and exceptionals atBritain’s oldest brewer rose 9.7% to £8.0 million but statutory profit before tax was down 25.6% to £6.5 million, due to lower profits on property disposals and an impairment charge.

 

At the year end Shepherd Neame operated 359 pubs in the South East, of which 315 were tenanted or leased and 44 managed. The pub estate ranges from food-focused destination houses and hotels to historic coaching inns and traditional community ‘locals’.

 

Miles Templeman, chairman of Shepherd Neame, comments: “This is another strong performance from Shepherd Neame, as we have achieved record turnover and record beer volume. We have improved the offer in our pubs, enjoyed the benefits of recent capital investment in our estate, grown our beer sales and invested to develop our marketing capability.”

 

He cautions: “However, the general economic and industry outlook remains challenging with decline in consumer income and inflation in our cost base. We will continue to pursue our long-term strategy of investing fully in our brands and pubs so as to retain the strength and identity of the business. I have every confidence that we will continue to deliver value for shareholders with dividend growth and a strong balance sheet for future expansion.”

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Heineken Starts Amstel Brewing in Russia


Heineken has commenced the brewing of its Amstel brand at its St Petersburg brewery in Russia. Heineken is reported to be aiming to capture a 1% share of the Russian beer market for Amstel by the end of the year as consumer demand for premium beer brands, such as Heineken and Zlaty Bazant, recovers.

During the past decade the Russian beer market has expanded by more than 40% and is now the fourth largest in the world. However, a 200% increase in beer tax imposed by the Russian Government in 2010 dampened demand.

Five brewers – Baltika Breweries, SUN InBev, Heineken, Efes and SABMiller – control over 80% of the Russian beer market. Calsberg’s Baltika Breweries is the clear market leader with a 40% share.

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Foster’s Rejects A$11.2b SABMiller Approach


Foster’s Group, the largest brewer in Australia, has rejected an unsolicited A$11.2b (Eur8.3b) acquisition approach from SABMiller. The proposal to acquire Foster’s is in line with SABMiller’s strategy to create an attractive global spread of businesses, with a focus on developing strong and successful brand portfolios.

Australia has a strong, wealthy and growing economy with consistent long term population growth in key demographics, and is well positioned to benefit from continued economic growth in Asia. Australia has a profitable beer market in which Foster’s is the leading brewer with 7 of the top 10 beer brands, a national distribution platform and scale production.

The proposed price of A$4.90 a share in cash represents an enterprise value for Foster’s of A$11.2b and a forecast EV/EBITDA multiple of 12.5 times. However, the board of Foster’s believes that the proposal significantly undervalues the company.

“SABMiller has a proven track record of acquiring and integrating brewing companies in a way which benefits shareholders, employees, business partners and the broader community,” says Graham Mackay, chief executive of SABMiller. “We continue to believe that the proposal price is attractive and offers good value to Foster’s shareholders. SABMiller can conclude a transaction quickly and will continue to seek engagement with the board of Foster’s to put an agreed proposal to Foster’s shareholders.”

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Moscow Brewing Company to Produce Kirin Beer


Moscow Brewing Company has signed a 20-year deal with Kirin Holdings of Japan for the licensed production of Kirin Ichiban beer in Russia. The brand will be produced at the Moscow Brewing Company’s state-of-the-art brewery in Moscow.

Founded in early 2008, Moscow Brewing Company is one of Russia’s leading producers and importers of beer and beverages. Its beer and beverage manufacturing facility was commissioned in October 2008 and is located in Mytischi, Moscow Region.

Moscow Brewing Company also brews and distributes the Coors Light brand in Russia for Molson Coors Brewing Company, the North American beer group.

With consumption per capita at around 71 litres and a market size of approximately 100m hectolitres, Russia is the fourth largest beer market in the world by volume and has seen significant growth in beer sales in the past decade. International premium brands that are locally produced, in particular, have grown in popularity in Russia and despite the recent imposition of new taxes, the category shows signs of even greater growth potential in the coming years.

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Heineken Looks to Expand in Brazil


Heineken is reported to be considering making an offer to acquire Primo Schincariol Industria de Cervejas Refrigerantes, the second largest brewer in Brazil behind Anheuser-Busch InBev. Primo Schincariol Industria de Cervejas Refrigerantes is estimated to be worth in the region of £2b.

Such an acquisition move would be in line with Heineken’s strategy of developing its presence in fast growing emerging beer markets of the world to help balance its exposure to sluggish mature regions such as Western Europe and the US.

Heineken is already present in Brazil, the world’s third largest beer market by volume, through its partnership with Cervejarias Kaiser.

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Decline in British Beer Sales Eases


Beer sales fell by 3.8 per cent in the first quarter of 2011 compared with the same period in 2010, according to the latest UK Quarterly Beer Barometer published today by the British Beer & Pub Association.

Both the on and off-trade showed a decline of 3.8 per cent, and the decline of sales in pubs has slowed, following an 8.8 per cent fall in the same period in 2010 – the lowest first quarter decline since 2005.

While the impact of the huge, 7.2% tax rise in the March 2011 Budget has yet to surface in the BBPA’s statistics, the BBPA says the good weather at Easter, and the extended bank holiday season may help the second quarter figures, as people flock to pubs to enjoy the Royal Wedding and the sunshine.

“Taken together, the fall in sales, and the impact of the Budget shows sales in the sector are still fragile. However, the on-trade’s performance relative to the off-trade has improved – and quarter two will be helped by the bank holiday bonanza and the good weather,” says Brigid Simmonds, chief executive of BBPA. “While it’s a pity that any recovery will be undermined by the huge tax hike, we still must make the most of the bank holiday season, and enjoy a celebratory beer or two in the nation’s pubs in the coming days.”

The British Beer & Pub Association is the UK’s leading organisation representing the brewing and pub sector. Its members account for 96% of the beer brewed in the UK and own nearly two thirds of Britain’s 52,500 pubs.

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Heineken Sponsors London Olympics 2012


Heineken UK has been appointed as official lager supplier and sponsor of the London 2012 Olympic Games As part of the deal, the company’s flagship premium beer, Heineken will be the branded lager served at the Games and Heineken UK will have exclusive pouring rights for its portfolio of beer and cider brands at all London 2012 venues where alcohol is served

As an official supplier of the London 2012 Olympic Games and Paralympic Games, Heineken will be able to utilise exclusive hospitality and marketing opportunities associated with the event. It will also enjoy sponsorship and venue supply rights associated with the British Olympic Association, Team GB, the British Paralympic Association and the Paralympics GB team.

“There are no bigger, global or more spectacular events than the Olympic Games and Paralympic Games. We selected this opportunity as it fully reflects Heineken’s global brand position,” explains Alexis Nasard, chief commercial officer of Heineken. “Based on the experiences gained from being a long-term sponsor of premier sporting events such as the UEFA Champions League and the Rugby World Cup we will utilise London 2012 to celebrate with the world in a way that only Heineken can do.”

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SABMiller Reveals Europe’s Most Popular Beer Drinking Destination


Prague, Amsterdam and Berlin have been named the top European destinations for a beer, according to a new report into European beer drinking culture by SABMiller, one of the world’s largest brewers.

The report, ‘Whose Round?’ which was researched across 12 European countries, found that 20% of all respondents named Prague as their top city for a beer, although British participants chose London, followed by Dublin, as their beer-drinking destination of choice.

Prague was chosen as the top city by respondents from five countries and was particularly popular with beer drinkers from its Eastern European neighbours. Second placed Amsterdam trailed with 13% of the vote. London was fifth overall, proving most popular with Romanian, Czech and Dutch drinkers – as well as Brits.

As well as the British; Dutch, Germans and French beer drinkers all showed their national pride by voting their own capital the top place for a pint. Propping up the bottom of the league table were Bucharest, Bratislava and Warsaw, landing only 1% of the vote each.

Nigel Fairbrass from SABMiller says: “It is no great surprise that Prague is the most sought-after city for Europeans to enjoy a pint; the Czech Republic produces some of the world’s finest beers and is home of the original Pilsner, Pilsner Urquell. Equally it’s interesting to note that Brits don’t think London can be beaten when it comes to beer.”

‘Your Round?’ surveyed a range of beer drinking cultural trends across Europe, including which countries are most likely to socialise after work – and which have the most generous bosses; which nation of men are most likely to expect a woman to pay her way on a date; and the celebrities that Europeans would most like to go for a beer with.

Great Britain, Romania and Italy have the most generous bosses when it comes to buying beer. The Dutch are the least likely to go out drinking with colleagues (34%) but when they do, they have the most generous bosses, with 37% saying that their boss will sometimes or always stand a round.

Brits’ choice of celebrity beer drinking buddies were Cheryl Cole and Stephen Fry, whilst Barack Obama and Angelina Jolie were the most popular across Europe.

Other findings include:

– Britain is the biggest round-buying nation, with 82% of people saying that they buy beer in rounds – three times more than in Germany, where drinkers prefer to pay for their own drinks individually

– British bosses are amongst the most sociable in Europe – and the most generous, whereas French bosses are the least likely to ever go out for a beer with their teams

– British women are big believers in equality – more than half think that men and women should split the beer tab on a date.

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SABMiller Enters Argentinean Beer Market


SABMiller, one of the world’s largest brewers, has acquired Cerveceria Argentina SA Isenbeck (CASA Isenbeck), the third largest brewer in Argentina, from the Warsteiner Group. CASA Isenbeck’s principal brands are Isenbeck and Warsteiner, with total sales volumes in 2009 of approximately 600,000hl.

Its brewery is located in Zarate, near Buenos Aires, and has a total capacity of 1.2 million hl. CASA Isenbeck will continue to produce and distribute the Warsteiner brand under a long-term licence agreement. CASA Isenbeck has gross assets of $24.7m.

“We are pleased to have added CASA Isenbeck to our Latin American footprint, giving us exposure to the fast-growing and attractive Argentinean beer market and complementing our existing Latin American operations,” comments Barry Smith, president of SABMiller Latin America.

SABMiller’s wide portfolio of brands includes premium international beers such as Pilsner Urquell, Peroni Nastro Azzurro, Miller Genuine Draft and Grolsch, as well as leading local brands such as Aguila, Castle, Miller Lite, Snow and Tyskie. SABMiller is also one of the world’s largest bottlers of Coca-Cola products.

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Diageo Strengthens Brewing Business


Diageo has strengthened its beer business in emerging markets after its East African Breweries subsidiary acquired a 51% stake in rival Tanzanian brewer Serengeti Breweries for $60.4m (£38.1m). The deal strengthens East African’s distribution in Kenya and Uganda.

Meanwhile, speculation has heightened that Diageo is considering a move to purchase the 66% of Moet Hennessy, the drinks business of French luxury goods group LVMH, that it does not already own. Incorporating the Hennessy cognac and Moet & Chandon and Don Perignon champagne brands, Moet Hennessy would cost Diageo in the region of £10.8b.

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Molson Coors Expands in China


In line with its strategy of increasing its exposure to emerging beer markets, Molson Coors Brewing Company has completed its $40m acquisition of 51% controlling interest in a joint venture with the Hebei Si’hai Beer Company, a regional Chinese brewer.

The joint venture, Molson Coors Si’hai Brewing Company, will provide Molson Coors with a platform to further expand its distribution channels throughout China and give the company greater control over brewing, increased cost efficiency, and more flexibility on packaging and brand innovation in order to grow in the market.

Since entering the Chinese market in 2003 with Coors Light, Molson Coors has enjoyed a rapidly growing business with its leading international brand, which is now available in more than 40 cities across China. The new joint venture will provide opportunities to further expand the sales and distribution of Coors Light and regional Si’hai beers.

Molson Coors is a leading global which operates in Canada through Molson Coors Canada; in the US through MillerCoors; and in the UK and Ireland through Molson Coors UK.

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Biggest Fall in UK Alcohol Consumption in 60 Years


UK drinkers are continuing to reduce their alcohol consumption, with 2009 seeing the sharpest year-on-year decline since 1948, according to newly published figures from the British Beer & Pub Association. This, and other major changes affecting the UK beer market are revealed in the newly published BBPA Statistical Handbook 2010.

There was a sharp, 6% decline in total alcohol consumption in 2009, making it the fourth annual decline in five years. UK drinkers are now consuming 13% less alcohol than in 2004. Indeed, UK consumption remains below the average for the EU.

UK taxes on beer remain among the highest compared with other countries, with the second highest duty rate in EU – ten times higher than in Germany, and seven times higher than in France.

The UK ale market increased its market share of all beers in 2009 for the first time since the 1960s. Ale’s success is also reflected in the number of UK brewers, which is now at its highest since 1940.

Beer is vital to pub sales. Beer generates 60% of all alcohol sales in pubs, hotels, and restaurants (the on-trade), compared to second-placed wine at 17%.

Total beer spend is £17 billion per year – 41% of all spending on alcohol. Of this £13.5 billion is spent in the on-trade (pubs, clubs and restaurants) and £3.5 billion in the off-trade (shops and supermarkets). A total of £26.5 billion is spent on alcohol in the on-trade.

The average price of a pint of bitter is £2.58 and lager is £2.95. London is the most expensive region to buy a pint, with prices 35% higher than in the north east.

Beer is a vital contributor to the Treasury, with £5.5 billion paid in duty and VAT. In total, alcohol contributes £14.6 billion to UK tax revenues.

Beer exports are up sharply. Around one billion pints of British beer are now exported, a UK success story worth over £460 million to the UK economy.

“These figures will confound many pundits, as yet again they confirm that as a nation, we are not drinking more. Those who suggest otherwise need to focus on the hard facts,” comments BBPA chief executive Brigid Simmonds. “The new numbers show just how closely linked beer is to Britain’s struggling pubs, with beer accounting for around 60%of on-trade sales. Policy-makers should take note.”

The British Beer & Pub Association is the UK’s leading organisation representing the brewing and pub sector. Its members account for 98% of the beer brewed in the UK and own nearly two thirds of Britain’s 52,500 pubs.

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Foster’s Turns Down Offer for Wine Business


Foster’s, the Australian brewer and wine maker, is reported to have rejected a cash offer of up to A$2.7b (£1.6b) from an unidentified international private equity firm for its troubled, global wine business, which it plans to demerge. The offer was spurned as undervaluing the wine business, which analysts have valued at more than A$3b.

However, the move could well spark the start of a bidding war for the wine arm or for the entire Foster’s business, which has a market capitalisation of almost A$12b.

Foster’s has renamed its wine business as Treasury Wine Estates in advance of the planned demerger next year. With 12,000 hectares of vineyards, 20 wineries and 50 wine brands, including Penfolds, Lindemans, Wolf Blass, Rosemount, Stags’ Leap, Wynn, Beringer and Castello di Gabbiano, Treasury Wine Estates is the second largest wine producer in the world and incorporates some of the most popular and collected wines from Australia, California, France, Italy and New Zealand.

SABMiller, the world’s second biggest brewer, is reported to be considering launching a £7b bid for Carlton & United Brewers, Foster’s beer operation. A successful bid by SABMiller would make it the biggest brewer in Australia and strengthen its standing in the Pacific region. Japanese brewer Asahi is also believed to be interested in Foster’s beer business.

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Carlsberg to Close Swiss Brewery


Global brewer Carlsberg will concentrate its beer production in Switzerland at its main brewery at Rheinfelden and its site in Fribourg will close down by June 2011. The move is part of the ongoing optimisation of the production network across the Carlsberg Group.

Volume is being transferred from Switzerland to the brewery in Obernai in France, which became part of the Carlsberg Group following the acquisition of Brasseries Kronenbourg in 2008. During recent years, Feldschlosschen, Carlsberg’s Swiss business, has been producing below its capacity. With volume moving to France, overcapacity will become even more significant. Consequently, Feldschlosschen has decided to close the brewery in Fribourg and concentrate production in Rheinfelden.

All 75 affected employees in Fribourg will either be offered alternative employment within Feldschlosschen or will retire. The micro brewery Valaisanne in Sion, which has 10 employees, will be unaffected.

Feldschlosschen will now begin discussion with the City of Fribourg about the future use of the brewery site in central Fribourg.

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Strong Showing From Heineken


Global brewer Heineken has produced a strong first half performance but remains cautious on the development of beer consumption in Europe and the US due to continued weak consumer spending and planned austerity measures across many countries. Heineken reported a 42% jump in net profit to Eur695 million, partly due to positive exceptional items, on revenue up by 5.2% to Eur7.52b but down organically by 2% for the first half of 2010 as group beer volume declined by 2.3% organically, impacted by the weak economic environment and the effect of excise duty increases, partly offset by strong growth in Africa, Asia and Latin America.

Heineken’s organic net profit (beia) increased 17% to Eur621m, driven by higher EBIT (beia) and lower interest costs. The Dutch brewer’s Total Cost Management programme delivered savings of Eur104m during the first half.

Jean-Francois van Boxmeer, chairman and chief executive of Heineken.

“Heineken achieved strong organic net profit growth in the first half year 2010. Trading conditions remained challenging in Europe and the USA, but we realised strong group beer volume growth in Africa and Asia. The effectiveness of our premium strategy was reinforced by the continued strong performance of the Heineken brand which once again outperformed our broader portfolio and the overall beer market,” comments Jean-François van Boxmeer, chairman and chief executive of Heineken.

In the second half of 2010, Heineken will continue its focus on brand building and increase investments in key brands, which will be largely offset by lower input costs. The TCM programme will deliver further savings in the second half of the year. In addition, Heineken will focus on developing the performance of companies acquired during the last three years, including South American brewer FEMSA Cerveza, and the unlocking of synergies.

“We are well placed for the future. Our expanded footprint in Latin America complements our strong positions in Africa and Asia where we continue to see excellent opportunities for future volume growth. Our focus on cash flow has strengthened our balance sheet and our key brands are benefiting from our increased marketing investments,” he adds.

The recently completed acquisition of FEMSA Cerveza, which is expected to yield annual cost synergies of Eur150m by 2013, consolidates Heineken’s position as the world’s second largest brewer by revenues and third largest by volume, and expands its exposure to developing beer markets. In addition, it creates a platform for future value growth in three of the four largest beer profit pools in the world.

Heineken expects the organic increase in net profit (beia) for the full year 2010 to be at least in low double digits.

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Efes Breweries Shows Improvement in Russia


Despite the continued adverse economic climate and the significant excise tax increase in Russia, one of its key markets, Efes Breweries International, which operates in the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), Eastern Europe and the Balkans, has reported higher volumes, revenues and EBITDA in the first half to June 30th 2010, marked by a major improvement in the second quarter. Volumes increased by 13.2% to 7.6m hectolitres in the first half compared to the corresponding period in 2009, net revenues grew by 13.2% to $472m and EBITDA by 9% to $91.1m, although the margin fell 75bps to 19.3%. However, operating profit declined by 2.2% to $40.2m compared to the first half of 2009.

“In the second quarter of 2010, higher volumes as well as an another price increase by the beginning of April in Russia to reflect higher taxes eased the pressure on margins and EBI’s operating profitability improved significantly compared to the first quarter of the year. In addition, lower input costs and a stronger Ruble versus US Dollar in 2010, largely absorbing the negative effect of excise tax hikes and higher operating expenses, continued to help us to achieve better margins in this quarter,” says Alejandro Jimenez, chief executive and chairman of EBI. The group has revised its outlook for 2010 upwards and is now forecasting to complete the year with high single digit volume growth and flattish gross and EBITDA margins.

In Russia, which accounted for 78% of EBI’s sales volume in the first half, volume increased by 12.2% to 5.9m hectolitres, as EBI once again managed to show positive momentum. EBI expects an 8-10% volume contraction in the Russian beer market in 2010, mainly due to the substantially higher beer prices to reflect the significant excise tax increase in addition to the challenging economic conditions.

Having commenced its operations in 1999 with two breweries in Kazakhstan and Russia, EBI’s current operating territory consists of Russia, Moldova, Kazakhstan and Serbia, where it has ten breweries with a total annual brewing capacity of 24.6m hectoliters and an annual malt production capacity of 139, 000 tonnes. EBI’s operating territories include some of the largest or fastest growing beer markets in Europe and Eurasia, all of which possess significant potential for further growth due to their improving macroeconomic trends and consequently higher purchasing power as well as the low base of per capita beer consumption across these countries.

EBI is a majority-owned subsidiary of Anadolu Efes, the leading beverage company in Turkey listed on the Istanbul Stock Exchange.

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SABMiller Interested in Foster’s


SABMiller, the world’s second biggest brewer, is reported to be considering launching a £7b bid for the beer business of Foster’s, the Australian brewer and wine producer. Carlton & United Brewers, Foster’s beer operation, produces Victoria Bitter and Foster’s lager.

A successful bid by SABMiller would make it the biggest brewer in Australia and strengthen its standing in the Pacific region. Japanese brewer Asahi is also believed to be interested in the Foster’s beer business.

Foster’s announced in May that it was going to spin-off its struggling wine business.

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World Cup Scores For Anheuser-Busch InBev


Helped by its sponsorship of the FIFA World Cup, Anheuser-Busch InBev, the world’s biggest brewer, increased beer volumes by 2% in its second quarter and by 1.5% in the first half of 2010. The group’s focus brands grew volumes by 4% in the first half, led by Budweiser internationally, Antarctica, Brahma and Skol in Brazil and Harbin in China. During the first half Anheuser-Busch InBev gained or maintained market share in markets representing almost half of its total beer volumes.

However, apart from the international successes with Budweiser, Anheuser-Busch InBev is dissatisfied with its overall market share performance and is putting in place brand building and commercial programmes to improve matters in the second half of 2010 and into 2011.

EBITDA rose 5.4% to $6.44b during the first half with a margin of 36.8%, an organic improvement of 79 basis points. Revenue advanced by 3.1% to $17.50b. Net debt was reduced by $3b during the period to £42.1b. InBev’s $52b acquisition of Anheuser-Busch in 2008 to create Anheuser-Busch InBev was financed with $45b of debt. The global brewer gained synergies of $310m during the first half, bringing total synergies from merging the two businesses to $1.67b.

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World’s Strongest and Most Expensive Beer Goes on Sale


Brew Dog, the Scottish maverick independent brewery, has unveiled the strongest, most expensive and most shocking beer in the world. Named ‘The End of History’, the beer is now available to buy in the UK. The blond Belgian ale is served from innovative bottles made with stuffed animals dressed in eccentric outfits.

The End of History is 55% ABV and at £500 for just one bottle, the new beer is also the world’s most expensive. The limited edition beer is only available to buy from BrewDog’s online store. Twelve bespoke bottles have been produced, using seven dead stoats, four squirrels and a hare. The End of History is served in a shot or whisky glass to be enjoyed like a fine whisky.

“In true BrewDog fashion we’ve torn up convention, blurred distinctions and pushed brewing and beer packaging to its absolute limits. This is the beer to end all beers. It’s an audacious blend of eccentricity, artistry and rebellion; changing the general perception of beer one stuffed animal at a time,” comments James Watt, co-founder of BrewDog.

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SABMiller Calls For Greater Environmental and Social Disclosure


SABMiller, the world’s second largest beer company, is calling on the brewing industry to improve disclosure on environmental and social impacts. The company is taking a lead by publishing detailed information about the impacts of its own operations around the world, in an online format which allows for greater insight and scrutiny into the country-level performance of its businesses.

In just a few clicks, any visitor to www.sabmiller.com can see which businesses are performing well but also where improvement is needed across SABMiller’s ten sustainable development priorities; from improving water efficiency and reducing greenhouse gas emissions, through to discouraging irresponsible drinking and contributing to the reduction of HIV/Aids.

Andy Wales, SABMiller’s global head of sustainable development, says: “Transparency underpins our approach to sustainable development and our wider business activity. We cannot simply celebrate the success stories; we also need to be honest about areas of weakness. This interactive tool lets consumers, employees, partners and communities see how we are doing in those areas which matter most to them.”

SABMiller has developed the Sustainability Assessment Matrix (SAM) to monitor progress against each of its ten sustainable development priorities. To achieve each performance level, a business must meet a series of assessment criteria which includes both quantitative and qualitative measurements.

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