SYMPOSIUM ‘ACT FOR CHANGE’ ENDS ON A COLLABORATIVE NOTE

Organized by Vinexposium June 20 and 21, 2022 at the Cité du Vin, the Symposium ‘Act for Change’ gathered over 35 international experts representing 17 nationalities for a series of discussions focusing on the future of wines and spirits between now and 2030.

The event, which was held as part of Bordeaux Wine Week, ended on an optimistic note after addressing the main issues affecting the wine and spirits industry. These include changing consumer patterns, the consequences of climate change and their impact on the production and distribution of wine and spirits. Each talk addressed these issues and provided practical insight, both for industry members attending and those who joined the livestream on Vinexposium Connect, the group’s digital portal. Nine major themes were explored by industry players who view the future with pragmatism, ambition, and confidence in a world of experimentation and solutions to cope with the many challenges to come. At the close of the symposium, speakers agreed that the future of the wine industry would be collaborative, innovative and technological, where ethical practices, transparency, knowledge sharing and engagement between the large companies and winegrowers would be promoted.

Here are some observations on the panel discussions and talks:

If fine wines are to have a future, it will be close to nature

Questioned about the future of fine wines, Oliver Bernard shared his views about the changes awaiting the industry. Expressing a mix of enthusiasm and realism, the director of Domaine de Chevalier stressed the importance of reacting immediately to environmental issues, whilst reiterating his confidence in consumers and future generations in celebrating fine wines. Solutions he mentioned included the emergence of new grape varieties for appellation wines, support for estates to switch over to organic and biodynamic winegrowing and adapting vineyard management techniques.

New consumer habits and new sensory profiles

Questioned about flavour and aroma profiles in 2030, Cathy Van Zyl MW, deputy editor of Platter’s South African wine guide, stated that the South African market was in the process of transitioning to lighter wines. Whisky consultant Colin Hampden-White responded by sharing insight into changing spirits styles, which are increasingly flavourful in response to consumer expectations. Pierre Mansour, wine purchasing director for The Wine Society, stressed that 65% of consumers prioritise climate issues in their choice of wines. Many consumers are looking primarily for ‘honest wines’, showing authenticity, viewed as pure site-expressiveness. Honest wines now seem to be establishing themselves as an emerging and growing trend among consumers seeking added value. They are also asking for variety of choice, catering to their own personal consumption habits, and are turning increasingly towards wines that are drier, more unrefined in style, yet remain savoury, and also towards those that pin their environmental credentials to the mast. For spirits, the future is all about creativity, diversity, assertive tastes, and local traceability. New consumers want to be surprised, they are looking for originality and unexpected styles, which can stem either from new distillation techniques or from creative recipes with unfamiliar ingredients. Stéphanie Marchand-Marion, a lecturer at Bordeaux University studies the latest changes in flavour trends, from the consumer perspective and in terms of climate change. She concluded that wines could survive tomorrow’s climate challenges, provided a balance in their composition was found. 

Tomorrow’s packaging – where changing consumer patterns, innovation and lower CO2 emissions converge

The challenge for the packaging of the future will be to respond to the divergence between the unquestionable need to reduce the carbon footprint stemming from the manufacturing process and consumer perception of sustainable, environmentally friendly packaging. In the consumer psyche, glass remains a sustainable vessel, whereas the reality is more complex. The results of steps taken to recycle bottles are not significant, providing evidence of the discrepancy between interest shown for ecological issues and a real desire by consumers to change their habits. Lulie Halstaed, Director of Wine Intelligence – IWSR, has noticed this particularly in Australia, where 67% of wine and spirits buyers believe in climate change, but only 21% claim to act responsibly. Rob Malin, the founder of When in Rome, launched the first wine sold in a paper bottle, which emits 6 times less CO2 than a glass bottle. As a reminder, the production of glass accounts for nearly 40% of the industry’s CO2 emissions.

Tomorrow’s packaging will have two roles to play: research work and the move towards more sustainable packaging will need to continue, and bottles must be used as a tool for educating consumers of wine and spirits, which are among the most highly packaged products around.

Digitalization of Wine and Spirits

Cyril Grira, Retail & Omnichannel director at Google France, has seen an acceleration in searches for wines and spirits on the Google search engine, as with ‘organic wines’ that have increased three-fold. He also points to the fact that most consumer searches focus on grape varieties, appellations, and local productions. Yet, lack of consumer knowledge on the topic (80% of searches are generic) and of visibility for small producers are barriers to industry performance. The wine industry would benefit from taking a leaf out of the fashion and beauty industries’ book, where multiple formats are used to innovate and tell stories. At the same time, the online sales outlet must connect better with the physical sales outlet. As regards the metaverse, experts expressed reservations, stressing that wine and spirits are primarily part of real-life experiences.

Winegrowing and climate change: opportunities in the face of adversity
As climate change causes upheavals, techniques and typicities across the wine regions are evolving. During the symposium, it was unanimously agreed that coping with climate change and human resilience in supporting winegrowing would be pivotal to tackling the issue. Varietal diversification, planting grape varieties in suitable locations, rootstock and balanced management were all cited as resources. Viewing the future with optimism and ambition, participants called on the industry to take leadership of climate issues and underscored the significance of a collaborative approach – one of the biggest challenges is to think collectively, as a community, so that existing solutions can be shared more effectively.

Geopolitics, wines and spirits – lessons to be learnt from crises

The war in Ukraine undermines control of global capitalism, with consequences including the risk of entering a recession and the supremacy of the dollar in international trade. A new global geo-economy is in the making. Faced with this changing situation, the ability of wine and spirits businesses to adapt must enable them to grasp new export opportunities, in regions such as Africa for instance, and strengthen their brands and their image. Compliance with local rules and protection of brands and appellations are also drivers of this success. Similarly, the impact of climate change affects the geopolitics of wine and spirits, both in the positions taken by leaders and the viability of a supply chain designed to respond to the ‘just-in-time’ logistics expected by younger generations. As Christophe Navarre, chairman of the board of Vinexposium pointed out, “The impact of climate change on winegrowing will be huge. This is a priority mission for businesses, the choice is no longer ours”.

Agro-ecology and innovation: essential bedfellows

Faced with climate challenges and the need to remain competitive in a constantly changing marketplace, agro-ecology innovations are the future. They already come in a variety of forms, from the open access ‘calculator’ for measuring carbon footprint, use of artificial intelligence for managing farms and optimising aspects such as yields – including solutions provided by Israeli company Trellis – to the introduction of regenerative techniques. Although the latter concept covers a whole galaxy of realities, relevant regulations are rapidly progressing and influencing – sometimes even restricting – winegrowing practices. From high-tech solutions to a return to basics, agro-ecology is reinventing itself at the instigation of stakeholders who aim to make it accessible to the broadest audience.

How e-commerce has upended the relationship with the consumer

Lockdown expedited online buying and revolutionised sales. Fabrice Bernard, president of Millesima, commented on how the internet piqued consumer interest about wines that they usually did not drink. E-commerce has changed buying habits, but without driving customers away from shops. This development is compelling e-commerce players to rethink the way they work by creating new technology tools such as those provided by Preferabli, which uses digital technology to help consumers make choices. “We will witness consolidation in the marketplace, but the biggest change over the next ten years will be the increasing number of businesses focusing on the customer rather than on the product. Shops are not the only place where customers can have physical interactions. Digital technology will allow the magic surrounding the product’s story to be developed faster and technology can help tell these stories”, claimed Pam Dillon, co-founder and CEO of Preferabli. The future of e-commerce seems to mesh with a competitive marketplace where customer service will make all the difference.

The future of wine and spirits in 2030 – wrapping up 

The near future will require adjustments to cope with current changes, yet also continued pragmatism, concluded Christophe Navarre, chairman of the board of Vinexposium, who stressed the positive pressure from young people for immediate action in favour of the climate. “Rolling out large-scale, practical actions involves reconciling political agendas, corporate activities, and consumer patterns. This is a complex process. For example, in supermarkets, producers who take positive action are not promoted enough. There is no doubt that this is now one of our missions”, he also pointed out in his concluding remarks at the Symposium ‘Act for Change’.

#actforchange #bordeaux #thesymposium #sustainability #winetrends #winenews #winetrade #vinexposium #CitéduVin #wine #winelovers #winetech #wineconference #wineindustry #wineeducation #wineconsumers #winemarketing #bordeauxwineweek @laciteduvin @vinexposium

A Summary of Wine Spectator’s 2022 “Grand Award” Winners

Wine Spectator has been honouring top international restaurants with extraordinary wine programs since 1981 with the “Grand Award.”  This award is granted to restaurants that show extraordinary commitment to wine service. The 2022 winners are profiled and listed alphabetically.  I highly recommend to all wine lovers and foodies that these global dining establishments should be on your wish list as you start travelling again!

Here is the full list of “Grand Award” winners:

https://www.winespectator.com/articles/snapshots-of-wine-spectator-s-grand-award-winners

 

#winespectator  #grandaward #winelist #WSrestaurantaward #WSgrandaward #winelovers #wine #winenews #finedining #winelifestyle #winetravels #wineandfood @wine_spectator

Garda Wine Stories: Exploring the Territory and Wines of Lake Garda – Filippo Magnani

From the 8th to 11th of June, the Garda DOC Consortium organized ‘Garda Wine Stories’, an event dedicated to the extraordinary peculiarities of the wine territory of Lake Garda. It was a full-scheduled press tour which included: seminars, masterclasses, in-depth analysis, guided cellar tours, and a stunning sailboat ride with tasting, aboard a cutter (equipped with the ancient trapezoidal sails). It was not only an opportunity for the Italian and international press to discuss in-depth the complex and vast territory, but also for wine lovers. On Friday, June 10th we attended a tasting with 20 producers, representing the best winemaking areas. The impeccable event was organized by the Consortium.

Discovering Garda DOC
The denomination Garda DOC was founded in 1996. It represents a large geographical area that groups in the same macro area other important Italian DOCs for a total of around 31,100 hectares under vine, of which 27,889 hectares are in the province of Verona, the outlying hectares are spread between the towns of Mantua and Brescia. Today, it has around 4,000 associated producers and a production of 21 million bottles, with a good prospect of further growth. The objective of the Consortium is to enhance the value of the varietal wines produced in these historical appellations and to give further opportunities of identification for those who grow in the outlying zones. The Consortium is playing an important role in pursuing a circular strategy that conveys all the resources that Lake Garda has, and the dialogue between the wine system, wine tourism and hospitality, sport activities, and gastronomy.

Garda – A Wine Territory around the Lake
Lake Garda is the largest body of water in Italy, extending for about 370 km2, it is encompassed by 3 Italian regions: Lombardy, Veneto, and Trentino Alto Adige. Its banks extend for 50 km from north to south and for about 17 km from east to west. In the imaginary triangle composed of the provinces of Trento (north), Brescia (south-west) and Verona (south-east), an extraordinary natural and cultural heritage is preserved. The landscape, from any point you look, is a jubilation of biodiversity, corners of extraordinary scenic beauty. Mountains, hills, and beaches are covered by the typical Mediterranean vegetation with olive trees, caper bushes, lemon and citron trees, agave plants and vines; all framed by historical and cultural sites, castles, harbours, charming villages, traces of human activities that have always influenced the appearance of Lake Garda shores.

The climate is mild in all its extension despite the northerly longitude. There are many factors that contribute to the incredible climatic conditions that make Lake Garda one of the most heterogeneous and interesting wine areas. The northern cone-shaped narrow area is surrounded by the Alps providing a shield from the cold currents from the North. The lake also plays an important mitigating action, lifting colder fogs in the mornings allowing the ventilation among the vines, and by absorbing heat and releasing it in relation to the external temperature. Winters are never harsh, and summers are hot. The daily temperature range is quite high due to the presence of a breeze blowing south in the morning and north in the afternoon, thermal excursion is an extremely important factor for the perfect ripening of the grapes.

From the gentle morainic hills of the southern basin to the extreme peaks of the Alps, the soil around Lake Garda is a puzzle of different compositions but perhaps the most distinctive and fascinating element has to do with the light. This place is glowing. The phenomenon of light refraction made possible by the size and depth of the lake is an element of great uniqueness in the territory. Here the vine finds a perfect place to grow, in a bright and lush nature, helped by the meticulous hands of brilliant winemakers. The wide area that covers Garda Doc includes countless grape varieties and many interpretations of them.

Each of the wine districts that stretch around Lake Garda bring traditions in production methods, history and, of course, the most representative vines from the different areas: Garganega, Trebbiano (Trebbiano di Soave and/or Trebbiano di Lugana), Chardonnay, Pinot Grigio, Corvina, Marzemino, and Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon. Altogether, they constitute the backbone of Garda DOC wine production. Great importance is given to the sparkling wines using the varieties from the different wine areas: Garganega for white wines, Corvina for rosé, crémant method Chardonnay, but also Pinot Grigio, Reno, and Muller Thurgau.

The boundaries of DOC Garda embrace a wide area. Considering the extraordinary attitude of Italian wine territories to change connotations in a few meters, it’s hard to imagine how many environments coexist around the lake. The Consortium has been stimulating scientific research in order to improve the understanding of the pedoclimatic and oenological aspects of the Lake Garda territory, with the ultimate goal of proposing models with a sustainable footprint to enhance wine productions and to defend our extraordinary natural heritage.

Lake Garda: A Paradise for Wine Enthusiasts
Lake Garda is one of the most romantic locations and it represents the charm of the Dolce Vita Italiana. It is a real paradise for those who love wine, food, stunning natural scenery, sports, art and culture… in short, there is everything for everyone!  It is no coincidence, that the territory around the lake is one of the favorite destinations of lovers of our country (Italy). The road network and the water transport that connect the various areas of the lake allow wine enthusiasts and foodies to concentrate their exploration of the wines of the DOC Garda even on a short holiday.  A journey in a journey, a shining example of how wine tourism became the “art of hospitality”.  The Consorizio Garda DOC is proposed as a promoter of the territory of Lake Garda as a wine escape, collecting and communicating the infinite experiences that can be carried out and proposing them through multiple channels. Visit where official site www.gardadocvino.it  where you learn about amazing stays on these shores, in the section “experience”.

#gardadoc #staywithus #wine #gardalake #italy #italianwineregion #GardaWineStories #LakegardaItaly #italianwinelover #winelover #gastronomy #wine #vino #gardawines #wineexperience #winetasting #winetourism #sailing

Winechain (wiNeFT) Partners with CMA CGM Group for Logistics of Fine Wines 

Winechain the NFT platform (wiNeFT /Winechain NFT name) designed to create direct links to new generations of wine consumers around the world, has today announced the partnership with the CMA CGM Group. This global player in sea, land, and air logistics solutions will take a minority shareholding in Winechain alongside its founders.

Winechain is the fi­rst independent NFT platform for ­fine wine estates. This wine-meets-technology project has been designed to create direct links with new generations of wine consumers around the world has now raised over €1 million in backing from top international wine estates and others.

The initiative was launched in April 2022 by three Frenchmen: Xavier Garambois, former head of Amazon Europe, Guillaume Jourdan, CEO of VitaBella, Paris, and Nicolas Mendiharat, CEO of the San Francisco Palate Club.  The plan is to go live by the end of 2022 with the issue of the ­first wiNeFT (Winechain name NFT).

Xavier Garambois, joint founder of Winechain states:

“Although the acquisition of NFTs will be the first thing that enthused buyers will do on Winechain, the day will come when the owner of the wines will want to have them shipped to their homes, wherever that might be in the world, and in the very best conditions. Apart from enabling access to rare wines, Winechain also takes care of logistics to ensure that the wines arrive at their final destination in perfect condition. This worldwide partnership with the CMA CGA Group is a mark of confidence in the future and our strategy that enables us to look to the long term. We will be able to benefit from the expertise and experience of CMA CGA and the major support that they can bring in terms of sea and air transport and logistical services.”

 

#winetrade #winedelivery #winelogistics #logistics #NFT #winechain #winemarketing #nfts #nftcommunity #wine #finewine #winelovers #winecollectors #wineinvestors #nftcollector #winenews #wineindustry #winetech #winetrends #winetechnology

Hermitage Launches Online Charity Wine Auction

Hermitage, the Rhône Valley wine appellation has launched its online wine auction, which is now open for bidding until Tuesday, June 21-  4 pm via the fine wine auction marketplace Bid For Wine https://www.bidforwine.co.uk/legendary-hermitage.

The lots available to bid on have been donated by Hermitage winemakers with some unique vintages for wine lovers and collectors.

The Centre Médical de La Teppe (France) and The Epilepsy Society (UK) are the two charities that have been chosen for the auction, with all proceeds being donated equally between the two.

Hermitage is also hosting their ‘Legendary Hermitage’ event at the Four Seasons Hotel, London, at Ten Trinity Square on Monday June 20th. The event is hosted by several of the Hermitage winemakers which includes a tasting of the prestigious cuvées available on the UK market, and a gastronomic dinner curated by award-winning chef, Anne-Sophie Pic. Chef Pic is the most decorated female chef in the world, with eight Michelin stars to her name.

Michel Chapoutier, president of the Hermitage appellation, said: “Our Legendary Hermitage event is an opportunity to share our wines with the UK wine trade, and along with our online charity wine auction, we are also helping out some charities which are important to our winemakers. We can’t wait to meet everyone and allow them to taste some exciting wines, some of which they won’t have tasted before.”

The auction lots include:

Lot 1 – Maison Les Alexandrins 2020, White – 6 bottles

Lot 2 – Christelle Betton, Arpège 2004-2011-2019, White (3 bottles)

Lot 3 – Maison M.Chapoutier, Vin de Paille 1999, Magnum

Lot 4 – Maison M.Chapoutier, Pavillon 2007, Red, Magnum

Lot 5 – Maison M.Chapoutier, De l’Orée 2007, White, Mathusalem

Lot 6 – Maison Jean-Louis Chave, Red 2015, Jeroboam

Lot 7 – Delas Frères, Domaine des Tourettes 2015, White, Jeroboam

Lot 8 – Ferraton Père & Fils – 6 bottles

Les Miaux 1998, White (2 bottles)

Les Dionnières 2001, Red (2 bottles)

Le Méal 2001, Red (2 bottles)

Lot 9- Ferraton Père & Fils – 6 bottles

Les Miaux 1998, White (2 bottles)

Les Dionnières 2001, Red (2 bottles)

Le Méal 2001, Red (2 bottles)

Lot 10 – Maison Guigal – 6 bottles

Ex-Voto 2012, Red (3 bottles)

Ex-Voto 2012, White (3 bottles)

Lot 11 – Maison Paul Jaboulet Aîné, La Chapelle 2006, Red, Jeroboam

Lot 12 – Maison Paul Jaboulet Aîné, La Chapelle 1982-1985-2009-2012-2015-2016, Red (6 bottles)

Lot 13 – Domaine des Martinelles – 6 magnums

Domaine des Martinelles 2013, Red, Magnum (2 magnums)

Domaine des Martinelles 2015, Red, Magnum (2 magnums)

Domaine des Martinelles 2020, White, Magnum (2 magnums)

Lot 14 – Gabriel Meffre, Laurus 2015, Red – 3 bottles

Lot 15 – Domaine Marc Sorrel, Le Gréal 2018, Red – 3 bottles

Lot 16 – Cave de Tain, Gambert de Loche 2015, Red, Jeroboam

Lot 17 – Maison Tardieu-Laurent 2006, White – 6 bottles

Lot 18 – Maison Tardieu-Laurent 2005, Red – 6 bottles

Lot 19 – Les Vins de Vienne, La Bachole 2010, White – 2 bottles

Lot 20 – Les Vins de Vienne, Les Chirats de Saint-Christophe 2009, Red – 2 bottles

#rhonevalley #hermitage #bidforwine #AnneSophiePic #rhonewine #wineauction #wine #redwine #whitewine #winelovers #winecollectors #wineinvestors #wineandfood #womeninfood #womeninwine #Michelinstarred #Michelin #chef  #RhoneValleyWines