Innovation is often touted as a key factor in the launch, development and sustainability of alcohol producers around the world, and several of those producers have been highlighted in the 2020 AFR BOSS Most Innovative Companies List.

The list recognises the most innovative organisations, across 10 categories, in Australia and New Zealand, as judged by the expert panel assembled by The Australian Financial Review and Inventium.

Carlton & United Breweries was named for the second straight year as an innovative manufacturing and consumer goods company, after being acknowledged for the development of the Lexington Hill Cocktail Club, which has sold more than 2.2 million cocktails since it launched.

CUB’s Director, Insights & Innovation, Adam Murphy said: “Lexington Hill on-tap cocktails offer consumers in venues a high-quality and consistent drink prepared much quicker than it takes to make regular cocktails. This helps reduce long queues while giving cocktail lovers an affordable, delicious and more consistent espresso martini, margarita or sangria.

“CUB drew on its 100-plus years of giving consumers the freshest and best draught experience when developing Lexington Hill. We’re thrilled this innovation to reduce barriers and allow new consumers to explore the cocktail culture has ben recognised by the judges.”

He added: “Innovation is a way for CUB to grow our business and several years ago we committed to embracing it at all levels of the company, which led to our “Ideas from Anywhere innovation platform.

“CUB has a successful recent track record of innovation but we’re just getting started.”

Archie Rose was recognised as one of the most innovative retail, hospitality, tourism companies for its Hunter Valley Shiraz Spirit.

The idea for the project came from wanting to help grape growers and winemakers suffering after the 2019/2020 bushfire crisis, and saw Archie Rose working with Tulloch Wines and First Creek Wines to identify eight small growers of the Pokolbin, Broke Fordwich and Upper Hunter sub regions who needed support.

Archie Rose distilled wine made from smoke tainted cabernet sauvignon and shiraz grapes to create 1000 bottles of eau de vie, which sold out in four days.

Archie Rose Founder, Will Edwards said: “Innovation is at the core of everything we do. We were the first to pioneer a gin produced entirely from individually-distilled botanicals. Six years on, we continue to push boundaries at our new Botany distillery with world-first vacuum stills allowing us to produce cold-distilled gin and use a patented whisky production process using locally-grown malt in partnership with NSW farmers.”

Moet Hennessy was also recognised as one of the top 10 manufacturing and consumer goods companies for the development of an iceless bucket.

The AFR said: “The Dom Perignon Proxima bucket eschews ice in favour of a frozen aluminium base and metal fans to keep Champagne and wine at optimal temperatures for an hour.

“The bucket also elevates the bottle and ensures the label is not damaged to support the high status of the product.”

Andy Young

Andy joined Intermedia as Editor of The Shout in 2015, writing news on a daily basis and also writing features for National Liquor News. Now Managing Editor of both The Shout and Bars and Clubs.

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