News Briefs

Arrowhead Water Products recently bought competitor, bottled water producer Pure Water Shops, Calgary, Alberta. The purchase price constituted a mix of cash and stock. The deal is still subject to regulatory approval.
The U.K. government and whisky- makers are still wrangling over plans by the government to introduce strip stamps on whisky bottles in April of 2006. Under a recent amendment to the finance bill, whisky-makers would be permitted to put stamps on existing labels rather than over the tops of bottles. Incorporating the stamp into the label on the front or back of bottles would reduce the costs of investing in new machinery.
Hoping to make peace between Mexico and the United States, the World Trade Organization is working to settle a dispute over soft drink imports. The WTO is setting up a panel to review the dispute over Mexico’s 20 percent tax on sodas and other beverages that contain high fructose corn syrup or any sweetener other than cane sugar. U.S. officials claim the tax is a protectionist measure by the Mexican government and that there is not enough difference between cane sugar and other sweeteners to warrant the tax. Don’t bank on a quick settlement, Mexico thinks it’s too early to turn over the matter to the WTO.
Information Resources Inc. and HealthFocus International formed an alliance to provide CPG companies with information about the health and wellness marketplace. The partners announced the immediate availability of HealthTracker, a syndicated service to help manufacturers and retailers continually monitor and understand the impact of health and wellness trends in attitudes and awareness on consumer behaviors.
Corrections: In the June issue, page 60, Hillebrand Wines’ location was incorrectly cited as Toronto, Ontario. The correct location is Vancouver, British Columbia. Beverage Industry apologizes for the confusion.
Page 12 of the May issue contained the wrong photo of Barton Brands’ Ridgemont Reserve 1792. This is the correct photo.