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

News Briefs for February 1, 2016

February 1, 2016

•Shocked by the U.S. government’s recent decision to recognize Pernod Ricard and Cubaexport as owners of the Havana Club rum trademark in the United States, Bacardi, which also claims ownership of the trademark, has filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request to reveal the administration’s thinking on the matter. In a statement, Bacardi said it was seeking “all documents, communications and files that were created, used, or maintained by the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office, Office of Foreign Assets Control, U.S. Department of State, Executive Office of the President of the United States, the National Security Council, U.S. Department of Treasury and/or any third parties relating to the Havana Club rum trademark registration action.”

•With New Zealand wine exports reaching a record-high NZ$1.54 billion ($1b) in 2015, the New Zealand Winegrowers trade group says the industry is on track to top the NZ$2 billion ($1.29b) threshold by 2020. New Zealand’s wine exports grew by 14% in value last year, with particularly strong growth in the U.S., where value was up by 26% to NZ$430 million ($278m). In value terms, the U.S. currently accounts for nearly 30% of New Zealand’s wine exports. Category leaders like Kim Crawford, Oyster Bay, Nobilo, Starborough and Matua have all been sharply on the rise in the U.S. in recent years, with each enjoying consistent double-digit gains.

•Middlebury, Vermont’s Woodchuck Hard Cider has added to its Out on a Limb series with the latest release of Campfire Pancakes. The seventh installment in the rotated series, the small batch cider is infused with smoked apple pomace from Vermont Smoke & Cure and Vermont maple syrup from a local sugarhouse. Woodchuck Out on a Limb Campfire Pancakes (5.5% abv) will be available through April in limited quantities. Out on a Limb debuted as a rotating six-pack series in September 2014 and features a different cider every 90 days.

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