Alcohol Concern has repeated a claim that pubs and clubs can do more to combat binge drinking by turning down music and providing more seating areas for customers. Speaking prior to the conference on Alcohol, Crime and Public Safety, Alcohol Concern chief executive Srabani Sen claimed that vertical drinking establishments encouraged speed drinking because there is nowhere to sit and it is hard to make conversation. Sen also claimed that dirty pubs encourage people to act in an unruly fashion.
Off-licence bans Red Bull for under-16s
The makers of energy drink Red Bull have insisted that it is safe despite a large off-licence chain banning it from being sold to under-16s. One O One, which has stores across Glasgow and Paisley, has instructed its staff not to sell the product to youngsters. Red Bull, often served with vodka in pubs, has already been banned in Denmark with around four other countries' health departments known to have concerns. However, a spokeswoman for Red Bull said that there was no medical evidence to suggest it was not safe.
Britvic's on-trade sales hit £1bn a year
Soft drinks supplier Britvic's on-trade sales have hit the £1bn mark for the first time. Last year it sold over 261m litres of soft drinks in pubs. Britvic's growth has chiefly been driven by its leading brands J20, Pepsi and R. White's lemonade. J20 now accounts for 92% of all juice drinks sold in pubs. Category director Andrew Marsden said: 'Soft drinks consumption in pubs is a real success story as adult pub goers make new lifestyle choices and now demand credible soft drinks, not only for drivers, family or food occasions, but also as a healthier alternative to alcohol in the evening and at lunch.
GK adds 'Responsible' awards category
Greene King Pub Company has introduced a new Responsible Retailing category to its Pub of the Year awards. The award is open to all 800 pubs within its estate and will recognise the pub team which actively goes one step further to promote responsible retailing practices to its customers. The winning house will be one that demonstrates its commitment through education and training while still focusing on commercial growth.
Spriet takes helm at Pernod Ricard UK
Jean-Manuel Spriet has been appointed chief executive of Pernod Ricard UK. He takes over from Paul Duffy who has been named chief executive of Irish Distillers, one of Pernod Ricard's key brand-owning companies. Spriet joined the company in 1990 and has spent the last three years as chief executive of the Jan Becher division, the Czech Republic's leading spirits importer.