Exclusive news and research on the wine, spirits and beer business

News Briefs for November 19, 2014

November 19, 2014

•Italy’s Molinari Sambuca has partnered with Van Gogh Imports to reintroduce Molinari Caffè to the U.S. market. The coffee liqueur is available nationwide at a suggested retail price of $25.99 a 750-ml. bottle. Molinari Caffè is a blend of Molinari Sambuca Extra, herbs and spices and 100% Italian-roasted Arabica beans from Guatemala and the Dominican Republic, as well as Robusta coffee beans from Java, Togo and Congo.

•Virginia’s Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) board has approved a series of moves that will have the effect of raising spirits prices by about $0.24 to $0.29 a bottle across the state, effective early December. In lieu of hiking the standard markup on spirits throughout the retail monopoly, the Virginia ABC is instead raising its “case-handling” fee from $1 to $2, increasing the markup on 50-ml. “miniature” bottles from 49% to 69% (bringing it in line with other bottle sizes) and altering its current roundup from five to nine cents. The agency says the changes will result in an additional $9.5 million in revenue for its fiscal 2016, which starts next July, and will contribute to closing Virginia’s $2.4 billion two-year budget gap while also providing funds to allow the ABC to modernize its operations.

•The Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board (PLCB) has extended the 10% discount on wine and spirits sales to licensees to transactions made on its eCommerce store. Previously, beverage alcohol licensees could only access their discount at brick-and-mortar stores or over the phone. On average, the PLCB’s eCommerce site lists between 2,000 and 2,500 “online exclusive” products not found in its brick-and-mortar stores. The agency’s eCommerce store had sales of nearly $2 million in the year through June, including some sales to out-of-state customers.

 

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