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Personal Page: November 2013

Posted on  | October 25, 2013   Bookmark and Share
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A Special Relationship

Our hope is that you will be reading this column, post-Government Shutdown. But regardless, unfortunately this special relationship we have with the government in the conduct of day-to-day business matters is poised to have some real carryover effects. A significant number of businesses will be delayed or not be able to open, and a wave of new products may not make it into the market in time for the holidays.

For example, the TTB receives almost 12,000 requests for label approvals during the year. The November shutdown put a freeze on new brands, particularly damaging to those hoping to take advantage of the holiday period. Note, however, that although online permits and label approvals won’t be processed during the shutdown, you can still use the website to file returns for federal excise taxes. What a surprise.

 

William G. Slone, Chairman

America’s Most Welcome Gifts

Almost 50 years ago, as part of our effort to support sales during the holidays, we advised retailers to get their customers excited, using verbiage like: “Liquors and wines are always the appropriate gift. They are easiest gifts of all to buy.” or “We have world-renowned products in every price range for virtually everyone on your gift list.”

Fifty years later, you can say this with even greater confidence—see the choices you have to offer, starting on page 20. I hope you and your staff will think about pushing the envelope when it comes to gift-giving opportunities. Think about the young legal-age Millennials, for whom wine increasingly edges out beer in their preferences. It’s also a good time to check out the 50,000 products on BeverageMedia.com for the right holiday brands to match up with your unique customer base.

 

Jason A. Glasser, CEO

Spruce Up for the Season

As consumers gear up for the holidays in earnest, it’s the best time to follow the motto, “Be prepared.” Consumers dine out for celebrations and seek fun, added-value in stores this season, and they look to staff to help guide them to the best options in their budgets. Let our Annual Holiday Gift Guide inspire. “Training Matters” offers eight strategies to help train staff to be knowledgeable about your product mix. It’s key to build an enthusiastic staff that embraces learning and tasting. Read more on page 14. In this issue, we also take a look “Behind the Wine Curtain,” for a better appreciation of the hard work behind the scenes for sommeliers.

With temperatures dropping, let Tasting Corner transport you to Santorini, Greece for a glass of crisp Assyrtiko, an emerging European wine gem. With attention on South America ramping up as the World Cup approaches, “Spirits of The South” explores cachaça and pisco, poised for a popularity surge in the U.S..

 

Jody Slone-Spitalnik, COO


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