A study of wine industry clusters around the world notes the role extension organizations have in facilitating the transfer of knowledge between government, researchers, and industry. But funding for that vital work has been under increasing pressure. Despite the wealth of taxes the wine industry generates ($17.1 billion annually in the United States alone), extension work itself doesn't generate a direct, measureable payback. It's work done for the public good-supporting residents as well as economic development-and the beneficiaries are increasingly being asked to pony up funds to keep it going.
The Environmental Protection Agency has proposed the first revisions to its Agricultural Worker Protection Standard in more than 20 years, seeking to minimize workers' exposure to agricultural chemicals. The proposed changes include new record keeping and training requirements for farms, as well as new buffer zones for chemical applications and the first minimum age requirement for handling chemicals.
In the midst of a cold and snowy winter, New York grapegrowers and winemakers received some good news this week related to the condition of a different kind of climate-the wine business climate. On Feb. 18, the New York Wine and Grape Foundation reported the results of a new study showing that New York grapes, grape juice and wine have an impact on the state's economy totaling $4.8 billion.
Leaders of the brewing, distribution and technology industries have formed the new Beer Industry Technology Symposium, BITS, to create a dedicated industry forum where technology and strategy intersect. The first BITS will be held in Napa, California in conjunction with the Wine Industry Technology Symposium - WITS June 30 & July 1, 2014 at the Napa Valley Marriott.
Boosted by a solid critical reputation and accessible positioning compared with other sparklers in its super-premium price tier, Gruet's volume has now reached 120,000 cases and is advancing at about 10 percent annually.
The drought has some residents questioning wineries' water consumption and has forced growers to abandon vines. It prompted a campaign for a municipal water district to free farmers and homeowners from dependence on fickle weather patterns and dwindling groundwater, and it has growers in rural areas digging new wells in search of a reliable supply.
This year commemorates the 30th anniversary of the approval of the Umpqua Valley AVA in 1984 and over 50 years of commercial grape growing in the area. It also marks the region's 44th annual Greatest of the Grape event, being held on Saturday, March 1 at the Seven Feathers Casino Resort in Canyonville, Oregon.
Sainsbury's, which late last year overtook Asda-WalMart to become the UK's second largest supermarket, has committed to printing calorie amounts on all its own-brand wines over the next two years. Its move drew praise from the UK government, but also revealed division between multiple retailers, which together account for the vast majority of the country's wine sales and have large own-brand ranges.
Wine Monitor Nomisma, an Italian site that follows the wine market, reports on new data on the country's wine consumption: In 2012, consumption dropped 3.6%. Troubling, but not severe. But just twelve months later, for 2013, it nosedived 6.5%. During the same period, however, the total value of wine sales increased by 3.5%, but that's only because of a price increase of 7.9%.
Part of the Clark family that founded UK wholesaler Matthew Clark and with a grandfather who was involved in the founding of the Wine and Spirit Trade Association and the Institute of Masters of Wine, alongside his twin David, Michael was already steeped in the trade before becoming one of its stalwarts.
Tributes from across the trade are being made to Michael Cox, the highly respected industry figure and European head of Wine of Chile who died last night after a year long battle with bile duct cancer.
[W]hen Mr. Stark moved from an assistant winemaking job at Sinskey Vineyards, a famous Napa Valley winery, to the head position at Unionville Vineyards in 2003, a California-based head hunter told Mr. Stark that it was "pretty much the worst career move that he'd ever heard of in his life," recounted Mr. Stark with a laugh.
Over 1,600 exhibitors from across the Mediterranean's world of wine and spirits are set to descend on Montpellier in Southern France next week for this year's Vinisud trade show which hopes to attract buyers from all over the world.