Wine sales overtook beer sales for the first time at Australian drinks giant Foster's as the group unveiled better than expected first half figures. Profits from the wine division (A$250.1m) almost matched those from brewing (A$256.3m). Analysts said Foster's high margins were particularly impressive given the flat beer market, the growth of pre mixed spirits and aggressive competition from rival Lion Nathan. A strong performance from Californian acquisition Beringer Wine Estates pushed pre-tax profit up 25.8% to A$462.5m for the six months ending December 31 on sales up 19.4.% to A$2.37bn. {{NEWS }}

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