[A]lthough China's bustling metropolises and staid Bordeaux may seem worlds apart, the two are becoming increasingly intertwined. Indeed, China recently overtook the traditional strongholds of Germany and the United Kingdom to become Bordeaux's largest export destination. This transformation is particularly remarkable given the country's short history of mass wine consumption. Historically, beverages such as sorghum-based baijiu and beer have dominated Chinese alcohol consumption, with wine only recently gaining wide acceptance.
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[T]he worldwide wine business is a good case study in free trade, given that there are many producers and few restrictions on commerce. In recent years, the cost of wine has reflected this generally free global market in two ways – one good and the other bad, as George M. Taber argues in this op-ed piece. Taber is the author of four books on wine. His latest is titled, A Toast to Bargain Wines: How innovators, iconoclasts, and winemaking revolutionaries are changing the way the world drinks.
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According to the study “Eco-Labeling Strategies: The Eco-Premium Puzzle in the Wine Industry,” carried out by the American Association of Wine Economists, based on more than 13,000 wine bottles from California that are sold in the US market, the wines with the best prices are those that perform sustainability actions though they not specified them in their labels.
“Eco-labels provide information about the environmental characteristics of a product. Eco-labels are effective if consumers are willing to pay a price premium for green products which are costlier to produce.” However, “in the wine industry, many wineries obtain eco-certification but do not label it on their wine bottle,” points out the study.
“Also, eco-labels are relatively new and consumers do not necessarily understand the actual meaning behind the different labels. More specifically, some consumers are still confused about the difference between wine made out of organically grown grapes and organic wine,” states the American Association of Wine Economists.
“Yet eco-certification does not need to be directly associated with consumers’ recognition of the label, as we demonstrate with the investigation of other potential benefits associated with certification. We theorize that certification can provide reputation benefits via clubs or trade associations. We also suspect that eco-certification can lead to a higher wine quality and provided a second set of regressions of wine characteristics on the scores attributed by the Wine Spectator. The results indicate that wine quality increases with eco-certification. The winery might also gain reputation and publicity,” maintains the report.
In order to see the full study, please click here: http://www.wine-economics.org/workingpapers/AAWE_WP13.pdf
By Ma. Soledad González | Source :: winesur
Bottlenotes.com has become the favorite online destination for 20- to 30-somethings who are new to wine and curious about it. Founded by Alyssa Rapp in 2005, the company has increased subscribers of its daily wine tips e-mail from 30,000 in January 2009 to around 130,000 now. Drawing on the popularity of sites like Facebook, Bottlenotes’ focus on social media is what makes the company unique, not to mention successful. This year, while much of the business world is still reeling from the economic meltdown, Bottlenotes expects to double its revenue over 2009, and projects that it will double it again in 2011.
But, Bottlenotes did not start out as a media platform. When first founded, Bottlenotes was essentially a wine marketing firm and e-commerce site. Near the end of 2008 though, Rapp and her team transformed the site into the community- and content-driven site it has become today. The goal, she says, was to make it something akin to a Wine Spectator of the 21st century.
Click here to read the full story.
It also tastes better.
The Financial Times just published a fantastic infographic about wine, which basically tells you everything you’d ever want to know about grape varieties, wine regions, and good wines.
But buried in all the superb information is a remarkable nugget: A chart of the Liv-ex 100, which is the wine equivalent of the S&P 500:
By itself, that’s not remarkable. But then, take a look at the actual S&P 500. In the last three years, it’s down 26%. The Liv-ex 100, by contrast, is up by about 12%. That sort of performance would beat all but the very best hedge-fund managers. (And at least some of those guys are probably cheating.)
The Liv-ex 100 includes wines whose names you hear most often in a Bond flick or a rap song: Lafite Rothschild, Latour, Petrus, Ychem, Cristal, and Dom Perignon.
Once you’ve kicked yourself for salting money away in your 401k instead of going on a wine shopping spree, check out the rest of the infographic, which contains maps detailing the wine regions across the world, and recommendations from renown wine taster Jancis Robinson.
By Cliff Kuang | Source :: Fast Company
Knowledge@Wharton interviews George M. Taber, author of In Search of Bacchus: Wanderings in the Wonderful World of Wine Tourism.
In this book, Taber took on the task (someone had to do it) of visiting a dozen of the most breathtakingly beautiful wine regions around the globe. What he came back with is a travel guide for oenophiles that also serves as a primer on how and why winemakers are increasingly turning themselves into destination sites. In addition, Taber’s tour opens a window on the growing segmentation of the travel industry as a whole and offers lessons about competitive advantage and marketing that apply to all consumer-driven businesses.
Read the full interview.
It’s a tough market for wine collectors. Disposable income is still at a premium, and there is already plenty of competition. There are plenty of brick-and-mortar and online stores catering to wine enthusiasts … not to mention the likes of auction houses such as Sotheby’s, which dominate the auction scene for liquid bliss. Nonetheless, Vinfolio, which has been around since 2003, found a way to reach into the pocket of former AOL top dog Steve Case.
The amount Case plunked down for a piece of Vinfolio hasn’t been disclosed, but it is known that he put $10 million into another luxury business, Exclusive Resorts. Whatever he’s put into the business comes on top of $10 million already raised.
Does this mean the upscale wine market is coming back? The economic recovery may still be delicate, but this seems like a smart move for down the road. After all, money in a wine collector’s pocket is always looking for a home.
By Tom Johansmeyer | Source :: www.luxist.com
Although we are seeing signs of general economic recovery, the last year has been a hard slog for small winery and vineyard owners. In an economic downturn, the luxury good, hospitality, and travel industries are often the hardest hit. Among our associates, chins are held high and stories of silver linings abound. But industry vendors and salesmen are telling a different story–one of back payments requiring COD status, higher returns, down trending sales, and equipment foreclosures.
Now more than ever, it’s important to have a clear-eyed view of your business’ health, ratios and sales trends. In a climate where bankers are looking at every new loan application with a jaundiced eye, and subjecting renewals to greater scrutiny, it’s important to be able to identify and address each of the signs that your bankers will be looking at. Even if you feel that your sales and bottom line are healthy, you may be surprised to see your business in a different light by applying some of the ratios below. And if your business really is healthy, then you should be able to present these ratios with pride and explain what you are doing to protect and increase them.
Read the full article and download the white paper by Debra Ellis.
Source :: Central Coast Wine Blogs
If you’re a fan of Bordeaux, numerous vintage reports have ranked the 2009 vintage as being superb – one commentator went so far as to ask if it weren’t the best vintage in 60 years. Your job now is to make sure you can actually get one of the finer bottles, and help has arrived in the form of Wine.com’s 2009 Bordeaux Futures Program.
The site worked with Negociant Patrick Baugier of Capital Millesime and visited 400 chateaux, finally settling on a range of 2009 Bordeaux from 50 chateaux both big and small, including Chateau Lafite Rothschild, Chateau Pavie, Chateau Leoville Las Cases, Chateau Cheval Blanc, Chateau Olivier and Chateau La Couspaude. The list itself was curated by Anthony Foster, who has 40 years of experience in the region and is Master of Wines for Wine.com.
The initial list of futures will be released shortly, with more becoming available on a rolling basis. You’ll be able to buy futures by the bottle or the case, bottles are sold on a first come, first serve basis. You allotment will be delivered as they are shipped from each chateau, projected to be Fall 2011, and you can keep up with your Bordeaux on the Wine.com site.
Source :: www.luxist.com
The Wine Entrepreneur conference is the only professional wine conference focusing on wine entrepreneurship. It is intended to focus on four categories of individuals:
Wine enthusiasts who want to act on their dream to one day start their own wine business.
Wine professionals who want to further their career in the wine industry by broadening the scope of their knowledge.
Wine entrepreneurs looking to fund the next stage of their business and meet potential investors, partners, employees or advisors.
Wine business angels and investors who want to be exposed to new ideas, concepts and projects relating to the wine industry.
On both days, panels will feature innovative wine entrepreneurs who were able to follow their passion for wine AND to leverage tools such as the internet & social media, alternative financing techniques, innovative design, socially conscious philosophies, a recycling cap, out-of-the-box business models or a combination thereof.
For more details contact Laurent Guinand or Hailey Morton