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Manchester’s People’s Choice Drinks Awards Bolsters Support for Retailers and Brands

Supermarkets, retailers and wine and spirits brands who enter the People’s Choice Drinks Awards will be given even more support for their medal winning products this year, with an updated package of support designed to directly drive sales.

The Manchester-based PCDA – the only annual national Awards that uses enthusiastic consumers as well as industry experts to judge the entries – are open for submissions now.  The platform urges wine brands, spirit brands and UK retailers to get involved to benefit from the extended package that award winners receive – which, this year – includes a new online Drinks Finder for consumers.

All medal winners and finalists will be uploaded onto the Drinks Finder as part of the 2022/23 package. Using popular drinking moments, such as wines to go with Christmas Dinner, the unique Drinks Finder provides consumers with a tool that takes the hard work out of searching for great wines and spirits for various occasions. The Finder also includes a direct hyperlink to the retailer’s website, meaning that consumers can buy directly or add their selections to their online shopping baskets in a few clicks.

The Drinks Finder is being supported by a national consumer PR campaign in 2022 that will see the platform communicated to consumers throughout the festive trading period. Coupled with a digital and social media campaign to drive traffic to The Finder, the campaign aims to establish the service as a go to for consumers who need impartial help buying drinks.

Janet Harrison, co-founder of the People’s Choice Drinks Awards, said: “We’ve invested this year to establish The Drinks Finder with consumers. By ensuring the site is a destination throughout a key trading period, we’ll be supporting sales for brands and retailers and further building our unique Awards proposition. We have always placed consumers at the heart of the process alongside experts, because ultimately, they’re the ones who vote with their spend. In addition to The Drinks Finder, winners receive artwork for their bottles and judges’ comments for point of sale and marketing purposes – all valuable tools for attracting sales and consumer awareness of their brand.

“There are many opportunities for the off-trade wine aisle to shine this Christmas; after two years of stay-at-home festive seasons with limited access to family and friends, we expect get togethers to be extra special this year for consumers. However, with one eye firmly on the purse strings, any support they can access to ensure their drinks selections prove good choices for Christmas food matches and celebrations are always welcome.

“For entrants, the PCDA offers incredible value for money for entrants.  With a branded Podcast and YouTube channel, exclusive content can be created for those involved in the competitions. The Drinks Finder is designed as a direct sales tool for consumers in order to help the brands and retailers even further.”

Submissions for entries are open now for wines and spirits, with an online entry deadline of 17th October 2022.  The ceremonies will take place in Manchester in Feb (Spirits) and March (Wine) 2023 at Manchester’s Stoller Hall.


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Notes to Editors: The People’s Choice Wine Awards was created in 2017 by Janet Harrison of Cracking Wine and Judy Kendrick, MD of award-winning wine marketing consultancy JK Marketing. The People’s Choice Drinks Awards, now incorporating wines and spirits, is the only UK-based national drinks awards dedicated to and judged by enthusiastic consumers with help and support from industry professionals. They are designed to accurately reflect how the average drinker in the UK chooses and enjoys wines and spirits. The award categories reflect the buying decisions of the average consumer and cover all types of occasions. Submission numbers to the wine competition have grown substantially year on year. The competitions are very inclusive in nature, in terms of the people involved in the selection process, through to the types of drinks entered for the competitions, including wines and spirits in alternative packaging, including paper bottles, boxes and cans and low and no alcohol drinks. Unlike other competitions, the categories represent ‘drinking or buying moments’, rather than being generic and therefore are more meaningful to the average consumer. Millie Milliken an award-winning journalist and ex editor of Imbibe, joined the core team in 2021 to help grow the spirits Awards and increase its profile across print and digital media. 2023 Sponsors (across wines and spirits) The FAIRTRADE Foundation, The Buyer, Smurfit Kappa Bag in Box, Wines of Portugal, Vintrigue, by Lanchester Wines, MidWeek Wines, Berlin Packaging, Manchester Rum Festival, Bents Garden and Home, Master of Malt Trade, Oakley Wine Agencies. How judging works Enthusiastic wine and spirits consumers, selected by an online application process join industry representatives and wine professionals to select the finalists and medal winners in each of the consumer-friendly categories, using a points-based scoring system. The professional panel include wine and spirits broadcasters, journalists and respected buyers. In the case of close scoring or equal scoring, a second round of judging is undertaken by the professional panel only. The competition only awards one Bronze, one Silver and one Winning place in each category, with rare ‘Gold Commendations’ for special mentions or close scoring. Awards Artwork: Tony Husband The winners’ awards are signed, limited edition prints, created by Private Eye’s cartoonist, Tony Husband. A wine lover and friend of the Awards, Tony depicts each unique category in his own inimitable style.

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