South Africa and US in spirits collaboration
South African-based Distell Group has established a joint venture with Terlato Wine Group in order to boost its profile in the US.
The two companies are merging their US operations in spirits to create a Terlato Artisan Spirits division, owned equally by both companies.
Terlato Artisan Spirits will be based in Chicago and start trading in February next year.
The two companies are also working on a long-term agreement to import four of Distell’s wine brands into the US.
William Terlato, of Terlato Wine Group, said there is ‘major untapped marketplace potential’ for high-quality South African wines in the US.
Improving whisky casks
A group of researchers at Edinburgh Napier University have worked with Diageo to reduce the ‘angel’s share’ from whisky – the contents lost through evaporation during whisky maturing.
The Centre for Timber Engineering looked at how the construction of the cask could be improved to reduce evaporation (such evaporation can account for up to a fifth of a barrel’s contents).
The university has been awarded the Queen’s Anniversary Prize for timber engineering, sustainable construction and wood science.
Zico’s new launch
Coconut water brand Zico Beverages has launched its chilled strawberry banana juice blend: natural coconut water mixed with strawberry and banana puree and apple juice.
Zico says the drink has 33% less calories than regular fruit drinks, at 60 calories per 8 fl oz serve.
The beverage is available on the US West Coast for a suggested $3.49, with plans to extend nationwide in the near future.
Rabobank coffee outlook
The effects of El Nino and global warming are affecting coffee growing conditions in many countries, warns Rabobank.
Indonesia has seen very dry weather and Rabobank predicts a 2.5m bag drop for the 2016/17 season, down to 10m bags. However, the final drop could be ‘significantly larger’ than the estimate.
Mexico, Central America, West Africa, Ethiopia and Vietnam have also experience dry conditions, according to Rabobank’s coffee outlook for Q4 2015, although the impact on some of these regions has not yet been seen.
Exploring new wines
More adventurous tastes from the younger generation of wine drinkers is impacting the US wine industry, according to the US Wine Market Landscapes 2015 report from Wine Intelligence.
A third of regular wine drinkers are now aged between 21 and 34; and these drinkers are less tied by tradition than the previous generation. This means the country’s whole market is likely to become ‘a bit less predictable,’ according to Luis Osório, senior research analyst at Wine Intelligence.
“As the make-up of regular wine drinkers changes, so does the whole of the market landscape,” he said.
“An interesting finding is an increase in experimentation, which is having an impact on the selection of grape varietals and countries of origin that people choose to drink.”