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Be Spirits concept is hit at Vinexpo Paris

The inaugural Be Spirits ‘show within a show’ at Vinexpo Paris has been hailed as a “refreshing change” to other trade fairs.

An artist’s impression of the Infinite Bar

The first Vinexpo Paris event took place from 10-12 February at the Paris Expo, Porte de Versailles.

Be Spirits was the first time Vinexpo had created a dedicated area for spirits and the on-trade. A key feature of the Be Spirits area was the 40-metre-long Infinite Bar.

The bar showcased 24 spirits brands in partnership with 24 bartenders from 20 bars around Paris.

Exhibitors in the Be Spirits sector included UK-based Halewood Wines & Spirits, creator of Dead Man’s Fingers rum, Sentir Mezcal Artisanal and smoked gin and rum specialist Beaufort Spirit.

Leo Crabtree, founder of Beaufort Spirit, said: “It’s a refreshing change from other fairs, has a great atmosphere and [has] been well put together. We’ve had plenty of interesting introductions and will be coming back.”

Several seminars and conferences were also held throughout the show under the themes of Be Mixology and Be Brand, covering numerous trends affecting the spirits industry.

Discussions included ethical issues such as packaging, the growth of CBD and the rise of ‘contemporary’ spirits.

Other themes centred on the rise of pre-mixed and batched cocktails, and the threat they post to individual brands as they are not specified in the mixes.

Digital topics were also put under the microscope, including social media viral campaigns, influencer marketing and e-commerce.

Vinexpo CEO Rodolphe Lameyse told The Sprits Business last year that there could be a standalone, spin-off Be Spirits show in 2021 if the concept proved to be a success this year.

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