Beverage Bulletin May 2009

California Beverage Retailers Association

P.O. Box 56686

Sherman Oaks, CA 91413

(818) 788-8120

Newsletter May 1, 2009


CBRA Website and Newsletter

Our website is open to the industry. You can read our monthly newsletter on the website or have it delivered right to your inbox. There are a lot of exciting features included and more to come. It gives members another way of keeping in touch with what is going on in the industry. Visit us at http// to subscribe and get your part of the action!



There are a number of proposals that will increase your fees and taxes or make it tougher for licensees to do business. Members are encouraged to log on, check what's happening and give us your input. Together, we can stop these threats before it's too late.



Quick Shots

The Retail Industry Leaders Association reports that the down economy has caused crime to rise. They say amateur theft and shoplifting are up 84%. What tops the theft list? Alcoholic Beverages, Shaving products, and cosmetics.


Customers may be buying down, but they are also buying healthier. According to Industry analyst Mintel International U.S. Sales of organic beverages reached $1.9 billion last year with the introduction of over 500 new products. Sales have increased 117% in the last 5 years. Are you getting your share?


Imported beer sales were down 2.3% in 2008. Both industry leaders; Corona at 28.4% and Heinekens at 17.8% took a drop. Corona imports were down almost 5%. Sales have been lost to boutique craft beers, lower priced domestics, and Bud Light Lime.


Beverage Information Group's Handbook Advance 2009 states “On-Premise sales declined 3.8% ...last year. Off Premise sales in liquor stores, supermarkets, and others increased 4.7%.”


What happened to the leaders in soft drink sales? All were down in 2008. Coca Cola Classic -4.5%, Pepsi -7.3%, Dr. Pepper -4.0%.


Datassential surveyed 3500 consumers. They found most on a tighter budget, eating out less, spending more time at home, and searching for bargains. These shoppers valued quality and price first. Brand, convenience, and packaging mattered, but not as much. They are comparing price on different sizes and from store to store. They are depending on cheaper food and beverage products. Many are switching to store brands and generics.


Youngs Market and Wirtz Beverage Group will be forming a joint venture to operate as the 4th largest wine and spirits wholesaler in the country. Combined sales were $3.8 billion in 2007.


Wine Tastings and Industry Events

Wine Warehouse will be hosting tastings this month. Contact your Wine Warehouse salesperson or e-mail us at info@cbraliquor for information on attending.


The Christermon Foundation is hosting the Annual Beverage Industry Golf Tournament on June 19. Call Cheryl at

Coming Promotions

Mothers Day is Sunday May 10 and Fathers Day is June 21. Both represent opportunities for extra sales. Mothers Day is traditionally one of the biggest reasons for a family get together. Your customers may need to stock the home bar or buy wine and beer for the celebration. Do you have a lot of Hispanic customers? May 10 is traditionally Mexican Mothers Day. This year both fall on the same day.

Fathers Day is a time people may want to buy a bottle for Dad. Promote gift items and reap the rewards.

June also brings graduations and graduation parties. Another selling opportunity.

CBRA Opens Membership for the first time in 20 years

Now, more than ever, access to your industry is paramount. The CBRA is California's only statewide association of licensed retailers, and our membership continues to be open for the first time in 20 years.


What is the CBRA? The CBRA is an association of store owners and retail companies that are licensed by the state to sell alcoholic beverages. Our membership includes liquor stores, chains, grocers, and beer and wine licensees. We provide a point of contact where you can get answers to your questions about selling alcoholic beverages, what is going on and where to find things in the industry, what laws are changing and how they affect your business. We know your business is tough. You face day to day problems dealing with minors, state laws and rules, and a lot of other difficulties. We can help because we have spent a lifetime doing just what you do.


What do you get? A newsletter, up to date information on alcoholic beverages, what changes in the laws the state is planning, online beverage information, a way to meet and network with other people in your business and a place to call when you need help.