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The Co-op launches new female-led business network

UK convenience retailer The Coop is spearheading a new business network aimed at driving inclusivity for women across the drinks industry.

Co Op Head of Commercial for Drinks and Frozen Food Rebecca Owen-Mooney.

‘Raising The Glass’ was founded by the retailer’s head of commercial drinks, Rebecca Oliver-Mooney as a free subscriber network open to women working across all drinks categories in the industry including the on and off-trade channels, as well as allies.

The aim is to create opportunities and enable new connections, engagement and mentorship, as well as quarterly in-person events. These events will include panel discussions with the co-creators and draw on the experience of other guests and their experiences in the industry.

The venture is being supported by Double Dutch co-founders Joyce De Haas and Raissa de Haas, Red Bull category and e-commerce director, Lotte Tregear, North South Wines founder and managing director Kim Wilson, and Warner’s Distillery co-founder and co-CEO Tina Warner-Keogh.

Oliver-Mooney, who moved into the drinks category in 2023, said that the industry was “bursting with talent” and she was thrilled to be collaborating with leading figures foster a community “where diversity is celebrated, voices are heard, and opportunities are abundant”.

“Through our commitment to empowerment and collaboration, the network aims to build a future where everyone feels valued, respected and supported in their journey within the drinks industry,” she said.

The network has also launched a podcast, hosted Oliver-Mooney, which will feature guests from across the industry discussing what they’ve learnt from their various challenges.

The move is part of an upswing of support for boosting female empowerment and diversity in the drinks industry, following the publication of a report last year by Curious Vines, an online platform which connects women in the wine industry, and market researcher Proof Insight which found that 78% of women surveyed acknowledging sexism and gender bias as a key issue to tackle.

Proof Insight and Curious Vines presented their findings to nearly 20 key industry bodies, in the hope of creating a turning point in the industry to address some of these issues.

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