NEW YORK – May 26, 2017 – Climate change. Brexit. A call for integrity in wine origin labeling. These hot topics are just a few highlights from the densely packed program revealed for Vinexpo Bordeaux 2017, the world’s leading show for wine and spirits professionals. As many as 2,300 exhibitors representing 30,000 brands and 48,000 industry visitors from 150 countries are expected to converge on Bordeaux’s Parc des Expositions June 18-21 for four days of educational sessions, forums, master classes, tastings and networking events.
Of particular interest to the U.S. wine industry:
- Fire and Rain: Climate Change and the Wine Industry. The impact of climate change on viticulture and wine quality is among the most critical issues facing the global wine community today. This panel discussion, moderated by Wine Spectator’s Dana Nigro, will address the current science on climate change, the status of the Paris agreement and other intergovernmental initiatives, and challenges vintners are experiencing in their regions. Representing the U.S. on the panel are Kathryn Hall, former U.S. ambassador and proprietor of Napa Valley’s Hall Vineyards, and John P. Holdren, former senior advisor to President Barack Obama and a leading international expert on energy and climate change. Sunday, June 18, 3-5 p.m.
- Great Wine Capitals: International networking to promote local wine tourism destinations. Great Wine Capitals Global Network founder Catherine Leparmentier Dayot will outline the organization’s strategic plan and objectives and their impacts on local wine and tourism industries. Among the presenters will be Connor Best of Napa Vintners Association, who will use California’s renowned Napa Valley as a case study of good practices in developing a wine tourism destination. Sunday, June 18, 3:30-5 p.m.
- Wine and Spirits Markets after Brexit. This think-tank session will bring together a panel of experts from Europe to discuss the global implications of Brexit on the wine and spirits industry. It will explore Brexit’s likely impact on duty, retail pricing, category management and distribution, and the impacts on travel retail and the protection of origin designations. Tuesday, June 20, 4-5:30 p.m.
- Press conference: Declaration to Protect Wine Place & Origin. Rex Stults of Napa Valley Vintners will be among the speakers representing a global movement to ensure the integrity of wine place names in consumer labeling. The press conference will include several key announcements and will be followed by a brief tasting. Hailing from more than 20 wine regions around the world, signatories of the Declaration, which was first signed in Napa Valley on July 26, 2005, include 10 from the U.S. – Long Island, Napa Valley, Oregon, Paso Robles, Santa Barbara County, Sonoma County, Walla Walla Valley, Washington State, and Willamette Valley – as well as Barossa, Bordeaux, Bourgogne/Chablis, Champagne, Chianti Classico, Jerez-Xérès-Sherry, Porto, Rioja, Victoria, Tokaj, and Western Australia. Tuesday, June 20, 9:30-11 a.m.
- Napa Valley “pop-up” seminars. Visitors to the Napa Valley Vintners wine pavilion can gain quick insights into the region via 15-minute “pop-up” seminars held three times daily (11 a.m., 1:30 p.m. and 4 p.m.). At each, a Napa Valley vintner will lead a discussion and guide a tasting of four related wines. Among the topics to be explored: library selections, Napa Valley’s French connections, and the Napa Green environmental sustainability program. The Napa Valley pavilion will showcase 15 premium Napa Valley wine brands at this year’s exhibition.
Founded by the Bordeaux Gironde Chamber of Commerce and Industry in 1981, Vinexpo is the world’s leading show for wine and spirits professionals and a partner for the wine and spirits industry worldwide. Vinexpo is held in Bordeaux in odd-numbered years. Since 1998, Vinexpo Hong Kong (formerly known as Vinexpo Asia-Pacific) has taken place in even-numbered years, and in 2014, Vinexpo expanded to the Japanese market with the debut of a third biannual fair Vinexpo Tokyo. The two have become key exhibitions of the industry in Asia. In January 2017 Vinexpo launched a new concept, Vinexpo Explorer, two days of business meetings and discovering vineyards. Vinexpo New York, which takes place for the first time on 5 and 6 March 2018, will open doors to the US market for international exhibitors.