Crown Imports LLC,
formerly Barton Beers, officially opened its doors this month as the
largest beer importer in the United States. The new organization is a joint
venture between Constellation Brands Inc. and Mexico’s Grupo Modelo.
The company will import, distribute and market Corona Extra, Corona Light,
Modelo Especial, Negra Modelo, Pacifico, St. Pauli Girl and Tsingtao beer
brands nationwide. Prior to this, Barton Beers marketed the St. Pauli Girl
and Tsingtao beers nationally and the Modelo portfolio in 25 western
“We have enjoyed a long and very successful
working relationship with the Modelo Brewery, and we look forward to
building on that success through this new and innovative national
partnership,” says Bill Hackett, president of the new company.
“Establishing Crown Imports as the single national importer for the
industry-leading portfolio that includes the Modelo Brands, St. Pauli Girl
and Tsingtao beers, offers a new range of opportunities for the business,
the brands, our wholesaler and retailer partners and our employees.”
Coca-Cola to buy Jugos del Valle
Coca-Cola Femsa, Mexico City, and The Coca-Cola Co., Atlanta, announced
an agreement to buy Jugos del Valle for approximately $380 million. The
companies say the deal will increase the Coca-Cola system's presence in the
non-carbonated beverage segment in Latin America. Jugos del Valle is the
second-largest producer of packaged juices, nectars and fruit-flavored
beverages in Mexico, the largest producer in Brazil, and has a presence in
other Latin American markets.
“This joint venture represents a formidable
platform to further develop our non-carbonated business in a segment that
is growing three times faster than other non-alcoholic beverages,”
said Carlos Salázar, chief executive officer of Coca-Cola Femsa, in
a statement. “Working together with The Coca-Cola Co. and the rest of
the Coca-Cola bottling system in Mexico and Brazil, we are unlocking new
value-creation opportunities and developing a competitive portfolio of beverages.”
Craft beer to be exported to China
The first mixed container
shipment of American craft beers is on its way to mainland China, according
to the Brewers Association, Boulder, Colo., and American Craft Beer
Partners, Pittsburgh. An assortment of products from Oregon’s Rogue
Ales Brewery, New York’s Brooklyn Brewery and California’s
North Coast Brewing Co. were shipped in mid-December to Shanghai, China.
The groups say the shipment is a culmination of three
years of research into opportunities for U.S. craft beer in China and
reverse trade missions to the United States by leading Chinese beer
distributors. The effort was funded in large part by the USDA's Emerging
Markets Program. The beer will be available this month at bars and
restaurants in Shanghai for the equivalent of $4.50 to $7 per bottle.
Nor-Cal sells brands,
Nor-Cal Beverage Co., West Sacramento, Calif., will sell the soft drink
distribution and bottling rights to Cadbury Schweppes’ Dr Pepper,
Squirt and Hawaiian Punch brands to The Pepsi Bottling Group, based in
Somers, N.Y. The company says this will allow it to focus on contract
packing for other beverage companies, including those in chilled juices and
It also plans to sell a significant portion of its
vending route assets to 24seven Vending for about $2.8 million. During the
next year, the company will sell related vending machines and equipment,
and 24seven plans to sell franchised routes. Nor-Cal will manage the
day-to-day operations of the franchisees in the Northern California region
and provide fee-based services through a separate agreement.
“In addition to route management, we plan to
sell services to franchisees that include vendor refurbishing and repair,
product storage, equipment moving and cash counting,” said Vice
President Shannon Deary-Bell in a statement. “Nor-Cal will be a
supplier of vending consumables as well. We also plan to expand and enhance
this service model to other vending operators.”
The company added that it plans to use proprietary
software for vending machine management that will allow it to monitor
consumption trends and reduce product shortages.
‘The Show’ will go on
The Nightclub & Bar
Beverage & Food Convention and Trade Show
will combine forces with two other shows March 4-7 at the Las Vegas
Convention Center. Dubbing itself the “The Show: The Hub of
Hospitality,” the International Las Vegas Restaurant Show and Las
Vegas Hospitality Expo will be held at the same time.
The event will cover four exhibit halls with more than
2,000 booths as well as on-floor events, such as Shake It Up: Battle of the
Mixologists on March 6 and 7. Nightclub & Bar Show keynote speakers
include Toni Abou-Ganim and Dale DeGroff, master mixologists; Alain Barbet,
president and chief executive officer Pernod Ricard USA; Andrew J. Thomas,
president and chief executive officer, Heineken USA; and Peter H. Cressy,
president and chief executive officer, Distilled Spirits Council of the
In addition, there also will be pre-conference events,
educational programs and a power lunch. For off-premise owner/operators,
“The Show” offers a seminar series where retailers can learn
strategies and techniques to help their businesses succeed. True to its
name, attendees also can attend nightly events on the Las Vegas Strip.
To find out more about “The Show” or to
register, visit nightclub.com.
Beverage Industry’s October issue features a cover story on our 2019 Executive of the Year, Jim Koch of the Boston Beer Co. This issue also features a category focus on bottled water and the innovations that abound in flavored, functional and sparkling waters. The issue also includes an ingredient spotlight on the beloved chocolate ingredient as well as voice-picking solutions aimed at streamlining beverage warehouses. As usual, we rounded up the latest trends in products, packaging and ingredients.
Check back throughout the month for additional content.