Findlater Wine & Spirit Group took top billing for its J Moreau & Fils Chablis 2010 as Wine of the Year and Gleeson incorporating Gilbeys took off the award for Best Red Wine of the Year for its Marques de Murrieta Reserva 2005.
The nightclub setting was somewhat surreal for an off-licence wine and beer show but certainly proved a more interesting venue than the somewhat staid Kings Inns or the soulless Leapordstown Pavilion.
NOffLA Chairperson Evelyn Jones pointed out that a number of legislative issues were coming down the line which would affect the drinks industry and of which NOffLA members and associates should be aware:-
The Miscellaneous Provisions Bill has now been passed which could be problematical for the independent off-licence in that it may necessitate the removal of price promotions of alcohol from retailers’ windows
The Substance Misuse Strategy (which includes alcohol) is approaching publication
The Codification of Alcohol Bill is also in the pipeline
The World Health Organisation has now published its alcohol plan and it makes “grim reading”. The Department of Health will most probably take a lead from this WHO plan.
“All of these legislative proposals further restrict alcohol marketing” stated Evelyn Jones, “while the present behaviour of the multiples plays into the hands of the Department of Health.”
She also pointed out that minimum pricing, if introduced, “would be of very little use to us as independents”.
Cheap alcohol meant a rising cost to the Department of Health, she pointed out, warning “We need to keep out a keen eye to maintain the status quo for as long as possible”.