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Although the vodka sub-category remains the No. 1 segment in terms of volume sales, whiskey has become so popular that it is beginning to take over as the No. 1 spirit on a dollar sales basis, according to Bump Williams Consulting’s monthly wine and spirits report, which cites Chicago-based SymphonyIRI data.
Wine sales in the United States from all production sources increased 2 percent from the previous year to a new record of 360.1 million 9-liter cases with an estimated retail value of $34.6 billion, according to Wine Industry Consultant Jon Fredrikson of Gomberg, Fredrikson & Associates, Woodside, Calif. Of this total, almost two-thirds or 207.7 million cases of California wine account for a 58 percent share of U.S. wine sales with an estimated retail value of $22 billion, he says. Including exports, California wine shipments to all markets in the United States and abroad reached 250.2 million cases in 2012, he says.
Rising demand for Scotch whisky from both mature and emerging markets saw the value of exports grow for the eighth consecutive year, according to the Scotch Whisky Association (SWA), Edinburgh, Scotland. Exports of the alcohol beverage hit a record £4.3 billion or approximately $6.5 billion in 2012, an increase of 87 percent in the last 10 years, the SWA reports. Scotch whisky currently leads the way for British food and drink in overseas markets, forming about 80 percent of Scottish food and drink exports and a quarter of U.K. food and drink exports, it says.
Absolut Vodka, a brand of Purchase, N.Y.-based Pernod Ricard USA, is collaborating with the online art community Threadless to host a challenge to create Chicago-themed artwork for the next limited-edition bottle in Absolut’s city-inspired series.
“It can be intimidating to walk down that wine aisle,” says Danny Brager, vice president of beverage alcohol for Nielsen, New York. “There are so many items, sometimes it’s difficult to navigate down the aisle because you just see this sea of bottles.”
Woodford Reserve, the “Official Bourbon of the Kentucky Derby,” is honoring the annual horse race with the release of its 2013 commemorative bottle. A product of the Woodford Reserve Distillery in Versailles, Ky., this year’s limited-edition Kentucky Derby 139 bottle features the artwork of Oregon-based painter Eric Bowman.
The Hess Collection found a new pairing for its Select tier of wines — sustainable seafood choices.
As part of the year-long celebration of its 150th anniversary, Bacardi created a commemorative time capsule at its Bermuda headquarters to symbolize the unity, passion and pioneering spirit of the brand.
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