Energy costs, supply chain issues and the economic crisis - these are the topics that are of the greatest concern to the wine industry in 2022 and 2023. This is the conclusion of the ProWein Business Report, for which Geisenheim University surveyed a total of 2,500 industry representatives from 47 countries in November 2022.
The sparkling wine category is booming, with Champagne in hot demand. This has led to the embrace of top-quality sparkling wines from elsewhere, including England which now produces around 10m bottles per year. Nyetimber is the UK's longest-established, largest and most highly respected producer, as Simon Werner reveals.
Despite all the fashion and greenwashing accusations, the basic idea of sustainability implies that companies cannot afford not to be there in the long run. In its approach to sustainability, South Africa is very different from Europe.
If you want to understand what’s happening at the top end of wine, there’s no better expert to call on than Jamie Ritchie, the Worldwide Chairman of Sotheby’s Wines & Spirits, based in New York. Felicity Carter caught up with him to ask about the extraordinary prices being achieved for fine wine in the secondary market and whether the trend can continue.
Robert Nicholson, principal of International Wine Associates, advises on merger & acquisition in the wine industry. Most recently, he was involved in the purchase of Château Lascombes by the Lawrence Family. In this exclusive interview Nicholson frankly considers the likelihood of other US buyers buying French wine businesses.
In 2001, Jacques Berthomeau who died this month, shocked the French wine establishment by recommending the creation of a new classification called Vin de France that would enable producers to compete with varietal wines from the New World. Eight years later, his idea became reality. Today, it is a huge success - both for those exports, and - perhaps surprisingly for him - for many of the natural wine producers Berthomeau later wrote about in his blog.
A winery in Romania, home to Dracula, was pleased to receive an order from the US owner of a brand called Vampire. When they subsequently tried to sell other brands of their own such as Bloody Merlot, referencing the same myth, they came up against a litigious US system that proved very costly. W. Blake Gray offers valuable advice for would-be exporter to this enticing market.
Traceability is a term that is increasingly used, along with the assertion that "consumers want to know where stuff comes from." A New Zealand company is using technology familiar from TV police forensic programmes to help a super premium wine estate to give assurance about the provenance of its wines.
New Zealand firm, Oritain, is partnering with a super-premium winery in using forensic technology and QR codes to guarantee traceability of its single vineyard wines
The process, pioneered with products such as cotton, meat and apples, involves analysis of trace elements and isotopes in soil, grape and wine
Because these do not degenerate over time, the traceability remains effective throughout the life of the wine
The Oritain system does not rely on blockchain or RFTs but does not yet guarantee authenticity of individual bottles
Nearly eight months after Vladimir Putin invaded Ukraine in February 2022, despite sanctions and decisions by wine producers to leave the Russian market, sales in Russia are surprisingly vibrant. Sergey Panov reveals how Russian lawmakers, parallel traders, offshore companies and Kazakh consignees have all played their part.