This Expert Q & A features Caterina Tucci, executive MBA at ESADE, who will be speaking at this year’s WINExpo, scheduled for December 2, 9 am to 4 pm, at the Sonoma County Fairgrounds in Santa Rosa, Calif. For more information, including a complete list of session descriptions and speakers, visit the event website. Register here.
Wine Industry Advisor (WIA): Bulk wine is not a new business, but are there any modern benefits wine businesses should consider that are not already engaged in the business of bulk wine?
Caterina Tucci (CT): No doubt, bulk wine has been made since wine existed, i.e. wine in bulk is the first step in the wine business. Every bottled wine has formerly been bulk wine.
For those who haven’t yet discovered the possibilities provided by globalization, selling bulk wine offers producers the opportunity to capitalize their business—both a percentage of it and globally—by lowering expenses and, simultaneously, reducing carbon footprint. As we look to the future, with regards to wine bottling and packaging at destination, there are only benefits.
If you are a wine purchaser, the WBWE is your trade fair. You will get the opportunity to taste the latest harvests from across the world in just two days; you will be able to choose between high-quality wines made from dozens of diverse grape varieties from over 20 different countries.
The WBWE has always encouraged a sustainable and cost-efficient business model. Packaging at destination has turned into a new business opportunity adjusted to new times and to new possibilities. The world is changing and the wine industry cannot be less.
WIA: Are there any new or emerging trends in the bulk wine market? If so, which is one of the most significant trends you think the wine industry should be aware of?
CT: At the WBWE, we can find a vast display of quality wines elaborated from across the world. The wineries’ professionalism and also their excellence enable the final consumer to enjoy fine wines with a good quality-price ratio.
Emerging countries from Eastern Europe, Argentina, Chile, French regions, Spain and Italy have taken advantage of the numerous possibilities of working in this market.
The WBWE has always been interested in showing the new trends for the market’s future; therefore, the new packaging methods have always been part of our forum for debate. Design, alternative packages, and bulk wine all go hand in hand, providing infinite creative possibilities. Canned wines are both helping to introduce the wine culture to a different age range and to opening new market niches worldwide. At the WBWE’s conference, we have Robert Williams and Dennis Doorakkers, the two most informed international gurus on this topic.
However, canned wine will not be the sole key aspect, as wine on tap and bag-in-box wine will also have a key role at the fair. The increase in consumption in households during the pandemic has triggered the purchase of bag-in-box wine for convenient domestic use.
The market has to adapt itself to a creative, convenient and sustainable environment; this situation alongside the quality of bulk wines leads to a perfect interaction: the #bulkwinerevolution.
WIA: What is the one thing you hope attendees take away from your session, Join the Bulk Wine Revolution?
CT: We find ourselves in a post-pandemic situation, climate change is having a major impact on harvests, and the wine industry is rapidly changing. The market has to adapt itself to these new circumstances. This crisis has proven to us the ever-changing wine reality and the importance of new technologies. However, it has also proven that face-to-face trade is irreplaceable. We are aware of the sector’s difficulties, but also of its needs. Hence, we are the first face-to-face International Wine Fair taking place this year in the West.
Wineries have to adapt themselves to these new circumstances and must seize these new opportunities, the fluctuations and the new market positioning. Additionally, wineries also have to be extremely attentive and come to the WBWE21 truly prepared since competitiveness will be very high this year.
We have to think about the final consumer as currently the “passive” consumer no longer exists. Nowadays, consumers need to know all the stages of the supply chain of the goods they buy; with regards to wine, this means knowing the process from the production to its distribution. Consumers value the wine industry’s adaptation to an environmentally-friendly and sustainable world.
Caterina Tucci holds a degree in agronomy. She has worked in Haiti and Santo Domingo before joining the wine world. Within the wine sector, she has carried out her work in diverse wineries in Italy and Spain performing duties both in oenological production and in export. In 2010, she joined the WBWE team as head of the Italian and Australian markets; and after more than 12 years devoted to the fair, she is currently the WBWE’s project manager. She is an executive MBA at ESADE.