My Interview with Wine Meridian Magazine — Marketing Italian Wines in Canada

Wine Meridian Magazine
What is the main suggestion you can give to Italian wine producers to convey and sell their products in Canada?

Liz Palmer
First you need to know that Provincial Liquor Boards control the import, sale and distribution of wine and spirits in Canada. Here is a list of these monopolies: 

¥ Société des Alcools du Québec (SAQ)
¥ Liquor Control Board of Ontario (LCBO)
¥ British Columbia Liquor Distribution (BCLD)
¥ Alberta Gaming Liquor Commission (AGLC)

Quebec, Ontario, British Colombia and Alberta concentrate on most of the Canadian demand.

Secondly, you must choose an importer who is familiar with Italy, and your specific region.

Thirdly, find an agent who has had experience working with the various Canadian monopolies, especially the Ontario market.

Lastly, also look at choosing someone who is very interested in your products your business and family history.


Wine Meridian Magazine

What is the image of Italian wines in your country (Canada)?

Liz Palmer
Canadian consumers are then keen to taste new grapes varieties and styles, therefore the diversity of Italian wine becomes an advantage.

“Italy ranks #1 in wine sales in Canada followed by the US and then France. In 2014, Canada imported $425-million (CAD) worth of Italian wines. Québec is the largest consumer of Italian wines at 36 percent, followed closely by Ontario at 31 percent and Alberta and British Columbia account for 15 percent and 10 percent, respectively.”*

These figures speak for themselves – Italian wine has never been more relevant.

*Source: Statistics Canada

Wine Meridian Magazine
What do you think about the importance of media and press in the promotion of wine? Especially Italian wine.

Liz Palmer
It’s Important to continually receive regular ongoing coverage in targeted magazines, newspapers, online media and wine journalists.

There should also be a continued focus on educating media and journalists on the 20 wine-producing regions and 350+ varieties of domestic grapes. I think we will all learn a great deal more bout the regions and varieties when we are given more information to process.

In order to engage more in a global audience, the producers should make a special emphasis to include social media in their marketing strategy.

Wine Meridian Magazine
Most Italian wines are unknown because of their difficult designations. What do you think a clear message could be to raise awareness about Italian wines?

Liz Palmer
The best wines in the world (more specifically, Italy) come from specific varieties and places.

Wine Meridian Magazine
Positive points about Italian wines in Canada

Liz Palmer
Canadians have been loyal consumers of Italian wine products for decades. Canada currently ranks 5th in global market sales of Italian wines – these wines accommodate every taste and price range.

The Italian Trade Commission (ITC) does an excellent job in the promotion of Italian wines throughout Canada, as well as raising awareness through education with local wine writers, journalists, sommeliers, and trade.

Wine Meridian Magazine
What do you think about organic wine trend?

Liz Palmer
Not only do organic wines have the potential to be healthier for you, the environment, but they also have the added benefit of tasting just as good.

Here are three reasons why I believe this trend will continue:

Organic wines are produced with almost obsessive attention to detail and the often taste better;

The contain less or no chemicals; and

They are often more socially responsible.

Canada at ProWein 2016 [30 and 50 Degrees North]

Canada’s area under vine measures 29,500 acres or 11,950 hectares, which includes 550 vintners who produce one million hectoliters of wine. Canada is no longer known for ice wine – They are producing award-winning expressive red wines, delicate whites, rosé and sparkling wines, despite their harsh climate and long winters.

For the third year this relatively young wine country will be represented at ProWein 2016.

Exports of Canadian wines are continuing to rise: in 2014 Canada exported 1.8 million liters of premium wine to 26 countries, including: U.S., China, Hong Kong, South Korea and Great Britain.

With 22 wineries, the “Wines of Canada” joint stand in Hall 9 at ProWein 2016 will be larger than the last two years. In addition, two Canadian exhibitors will showcase their products in their individual stands in Hall 12:  La Face Cachee de la Pomme (apple Eiswein from Quebec) and Kruger Wines & Spirits (whiskey).

In addition to the joint stand, “Wines of Canada” will also offer various events during ProWein 2016: the daily masterclass at the ProWein Forum at 11:30 am and a guided tasting session every afternoon at 3:00 pm at the stand. Both events will be hosted by the famous British wine blogger Jamie Goode.

Canada’s Wine Regions
The producers at the “Wines of Canada” stand will be representing three provinces: Ontario, British Columbia and Nova Scotia. Ontario is by far the largest winemaking region with 80% of Canadian vines cultivated here on some 6,000 hectares. As a result, half the 22 Canadian winemakers presented at the joint stand come from this province. Varieties featured will be: Riesling, Chardonnay, Ice Wine, along with Gamay, Pinot Noir, Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon. Over the past few years Canadian Merlots have also gained ground with their convincing quality. This is surprising as Ontario is located on nearly the same geographical latitude as Tuscany in Italy.

Nine producers from British Columbia will be represented focusing on varieties such as: Pinot Gris, Chardonnay, Gewürztraminer, Riesling, Merlot, Pinot Noir, Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah.
Two vitners will be represented from Nova Scotia. The cultivated area is relatively small and primarily features lesser known, frost-resistant grape varieties. Nova Scotia is increasingly making a name for itself with sparkling wines made according to the traditional méthode champenoise.

VQA Appellation System
To control the quality of the wine and also guarantee it long term, Canadian wine also follows a classification system. With VQA wines (Vintners Quality Alliance) 100% of the grapes come from each relevant growing area. In accordance with this alliance each wine must state its province or geographic origin. Over the past few years more and more new wine cultivation areas are being defined due to micro-climatic influences and specific soil properties.

ProWein will be held from March 13 – 15, 2016 at the fairgrounds in Düsseldorf, Germany www.prowein.com

Liz Palmer
www.liz-palmer.com

Champagne Sales Set for Record Year

Champagne sales are set for a record year, driven by solid demand from export markets, favorable currencies and stabilizing sales in France, the fizzy drink’s home market.

Industry estimates gathered by Reuters showed that about 312 million bottles of the prestige sparkling wine will have been dispatched in 2015, a rise of between 2 and 3 percent from 2014.

Revenue has risen 4.4 percent to 4.7 billion euros ($5.1 billion) in 2015.

In 2007, the record year so far, revenues reached 4.56 billion euros, before the global economic and financial crisis began weighing on the market a year later.

The 2015 sales estimates reflected efforts to promote higher-priced products such as special blends and fine vintages, as well as growing demand for Rose Champagnes in Japan and the United States, Champagne’s second export market after Britain.

In Britain, a solid economy underpinned buoyant demand while austerity-hit Italy and Spain were starting to see signs of an upturn.

Economic woes in Champagne’s home market of France have taken the fizz out of global sales since 2010, but sales were stabilizing in volume and value this year and could even show a slight rise.

“France is on a recovery path. Consumption stabilised,” said Bruno Paillard, CEO of Lanson BCC, the number two Champagne house behind luxury group LVMH.

Sales were improving in French hypermarkets as well as in specialized stores.

“Consumers need to enjoy life,” said Paillard, adding lower energy prices and interest rates may have helped improve consumer purchasing power.

The Champagne market is dominated by LVMH, which owns the Dom Perignon, Moet & Chandon, Veuve Clicquot, Ruinart and Krug brands. Specialist makers include Lanson-BCC, Vranken or Laurent Perrier as well as drinks group Pernod Ricard with its Mumm and Perrier-Jouet brands.

Official figures for 2015 will be published next month.

Champagne, which can be produced only in the region of the same name, is facing tougher competition from Spain’s cava and Italy’s prosecco, sold for as little as a third of the price.

Industry professionals say the Champagne sector is fighting back by stepping up efforts to enhance the quality of its own product.

Reuters

Anteprima Amarone 2012

The preview of Amarone 2012 commences this Saturday January 30 through to Sunday January 31 2016 and is being in Verona, Italy at the historical Gran Guardia Palace in Piazza Brà. This two-day event is open to international press and winelovers.
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For any further information visit: http://anteprimaamarone.it/

Here is the list of all the participating wineries:

Albino Armani 1607
Cantine Aldegheri
Blessed court ancient
Winery Bennati
Cantine Bertani
Boscaini Carlo Azienda Agricola
Cantine-Bolla
Cantina Buglioni
Ca’botta Vini
Ca’ dei Frati
Azienda Agricola Cà La Bionda
Ca’ Rugate
Cantina Di Soave
Cantina Valpantena
Cantina Valpolicella Negrar
Cesari Winery
Azienda Vitivinicola Corte Archi
Corte Figaretto
Court lonardi
Corte Rugolin
Corte San Benedetto
Corte Sant’alda
Dal Bosco Giulietta Azienda Agricola Le Guaite
Damoli Vini-Amarone Winery in Valpolicella
Degani
Amarone & Ripasso Falezze_DE
Azienda Vinicola Farina
Fasoli Gino
Fidora Wines
Vini Flatio di Flavio Fraccaroli
Vini Gamba
Clementi-Vini Della Valpolicella
Cantina Giovanni Ederle
Latium Morini
La Collina dei Ciliegi
La Dama Vini Valpolicella
La Giuva La Giuva Fanpage
Le Bignele-Soc. Agr. Aldrighetti Luigi, Angelo e Nicola
Le Marognole Vini
Azienda Agricola Marco Mosconi
Massimago
Monte Del Frà
Montecariano
Monte Zovo
Cantine Giacomo Montresor Spa
Novaia
Pasqua Vigneti e Cantine
Recchia Vini
Vigneti Di Ettore
Cantine Riondo
Roccolo Grassi
Azienda Agricola RUBINELLI VAJOL
San Cassiano Azienda Agricola
Santa Sofia.: I Classici Vini Veronesi dal 1811 :.
Casa Vinicola Sartori
Saints
Scriani Vinicola
According to Marco
Tenuta Chiccheri
Tenute Falezza
Tenute Salvaterra
Tenuta Santa Maria Valverde
Tezza Viticoltori in Valpantena
Casa Vitivinicola Tinazzi-Italians Inside
Valentina Cubi
Villa Crine
Villa Canestrari, Museo del Vino
Viviani
Vini Zanoni
Zonin 1821
Zýmē

360° Champagne Experience

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The Comité Champagne has launched a global communications campaign which focuses on a 360° film. This immersive film offers the viewer a virtual reality tour of the Champagne hillsides, houses and cellars.

It was announced on July 4th 2015 that the Champagne region was granted world heritage status by UNESCO:

“hillsides, houses, and cellars” of the Champagne wine region in northeastern France deserve recognition. “The property encompasses sites where the method of producing sparkling wines was developed on the principle of secondary fermentation in the bottle since the early 17th century to its early industrialization in the 19th century.”

Enjoy this 360° or virtual reality experience by visiting www.360.champagne.fr.

Three ways to experience this 360° unique experience is by smartphone, tablet or PC, or 3D using Google Cardboard goggles or virtual reality headset.

Liz Palmer
www.liz-palmer.com