August Trade News


White Claw is the clear seltzer leader in on-premise, according to the last Nielsen on-premise report through spring. In that report, White Claw owned 67 share of seltzer volume and dollars, while Truly owned just under a 20-share of seltzer dollars and volume in the channel. 

White Claw owned the top three SKUs in seltzer over the four weeks to July 4, with White Claw variety pack #1 (Black Cherry, Ruby Grapefruit, Natural Lime, Raspberry) at nearly $52 million in sales, variety pack #2 (Lemon, Watermelon, Tangerine, Mango) at close to $36 million, and variety pack #3 (Mango, Strawberry, Blackberry, Pineapple) at $35 million. Those three SKUs accounted for 22% of the hard seltzer category during the time period.  


Molson Coors Beverage is ending production of Coors Seltzer, Brewbound reported, citing a memo from the company to its distributors. The discontinuation of Coors Seltzer, which was launched in October, 2020, will allow the company to focus on more popular hard seltzers in its portfolio such as Topo Chico Hard Seltzer and Vizzy.  

Beam Suntory, distiller of Maker’s Mark, and Boston Beer, brewer of Sam Adams, are teaming up to bring their brands into new categories through a long-term partnership spurred by evolving consumer tastes and trends. The first results of the partnership are expected to launch in about a year, with products that will take Boston Beer’s Truly Hard Seltzer into the spirits segment and ready-to-drink beverages featuring Beam Suntory’s Sauza tequila.  


Shipments of champagne to the US climbed 74% in the first five months of 2021 over the same period in 2020, and global exports have risen 43% in 2021, a remarkable turnaround after 2020’s decreased demand. 

Canned wine continues to be one of the most rapidly growing wine categories in the U.S. Volume sales in Nielsen-tracked channels reached $253 million in the 52 weeks ending March 20, 2021, up 62% over the previous 12 months.  

Many California wineries are forgoing fire insurance this year, either because they are unable to afford the premiums or because they were denied a policy renewal by insurers, many of whom see the policies as too great a risk given last year’s devastating wildfires and the state’s current severe drought conditions. Those growers who have been able to secure a policy renewal are finding it comes at a heavy cost. A premium for a vineyard in Calistoga, California jumped from $200,000 to $800,000, with the deductible soaring from $25,000 to $500,000 

Tobacco company Altria (formally known as Phillip Morris) is selling Ste. Michelle Wine Estates, Washington’s largest wine company, to New York-based private equity firm Sycamore Partners Management for about $1.2 billion. The deal which is expected to be finalized in the latter half of the year, would add to the portfolio of Sycamore Partners, which invests in a range of consumer and retail brands. Ste. Michelle labels include; Chateau Ste. Michelle, Columbia Crest, 14 Hands, Northstar, Spring Valley Vineyard, Col Solare, Michelle sparkling wines, Red Diamond, and Snoqualmie. In California, the company owns Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars (with Italy’s Antinori family), Conn Creek and Villa Mt. amongst others. 

Beer news

A study, conducted by Silverlode Consulting, found that the Ohio craft brewing industry’s total economic impact (both directly and indirectly) was $880.7 million for 2020, down from $967.1 million in 2018, about a $86 million decrease. Beer production dropped 17% in the state between 2018 and 2020, as on-premise shutdowns undercut large revenue streams for local brewers.