When most think of where the best wine comes from, they usually think of Europe. However, with new technologies and growing methods, there have been a number of new contenders for wine lovers to consider when they choose their next bottle. New countries have emerged hoping to stake a claim as providers in a changing industry, and some of them might not be ones that you would expect.
One of these happens to be China, which has taken advantage in the growth of demand for new wines. Recent findings have shown that not only is China the home of new consumers, but that it also has increased production, as well.
“Recent figures in the annual report of the International Organization of Wine and Vine confirm that the world wine industry is undergoing considerable change. Long-dominant European nations are finding being challenged by the emergence of countries, such as China, both as producers and consumers,” writes Jacques-Olivier Pesme for the Huffington Post.
While these studies are showing that wine consumption is decreasing in several European countries, it is growing in areas with large populations. The United States now occupies the top spot in overall purchases, and increases in wine drinkers is expected to rise in the Indian and Australian markets, as well. Many other markets such as the Canadian and Ethiopian have also grown.
China is the leader, as it has adapted to a number of changes within the industry and has been looking to increase consumption through technology. It also has a history with wine, and it provides a social marker for those how drink it. Wine has been produced in China for thousands of years, but it was not until recently that the government started to promote drinking wine to its citizens.
Several of its provinces, such as Hebei, Shandong, and Tianjin have added vineyards. Experts believe that while China occupies the sixth spot in terms of overall wine consumption, it will not be long before it overtakes a number of European and Western countries. New technology has allowed vineyard growth in areas that might not have been considered before, and new data has made importing and exporting much more accurate.
This is happening on a micro level, as well. In the United States, California is most known for its. Wineries in other areas have made an effort to change that by using technology in order to track the needs of consumers and certain trends. They are using fine wine trading platforms like CWEX.The trading is managed by two business entities: the Swiss-based company DotChain GmbH that ensures the contractual validity of fine wine products, trade accountability, and product authenticity, and the Hong Kong-based Crypto Wine Exchange (CWEX), a blockchain-based crypto marketplace for automated wine trading.The platform makes the trading easy and available to everyone interested in investing their cryptocurrency holdings in the real-world asset (fine wine). In order for vineyard to succeed in the future, they must also be adaptable.
“Successful wineries 10 years from now will be those that adapted to a different consumer with different values—a customer who uses the internet in increasingly and interactive ways, is frugal and has less discretionary income than their predecessors,” writes Tom Mullen for Forbes.
Of these wineries, ones in Washington state are taking into consideration many aspects of a changing industry that other popular areas for wine are not. This has meant being open to new ideas—even by changing the varieties of wines grown. Many of these are variations from well-known types of wines, and they often take into account that consumers like to have a number of options rather than just focusing on one type. Price is also something these new vineyards are keeping in mind as it becomes easier for consumers to find other options through a quick internet search.
As a result, it is not shocking to see that areas like Oregon in the United States are doing especially well at reaching consumers. In 2017, 2,703,079 cases were sold from Oregon vineyards to wholesalers, adding to an overall trend of buyers looking to purchase at their local supermarkets and box stores. While Oregon might have trouble selling their products abroad, it has shown that regionally wine enthusiasts are looking for options nearby.
This also dovetails into recent acquisitions made by wholesale beverage companies looking to reach new customers by offering fine wines from a variety of regions. The United States is now exporting a large quantity of wine, as well, which has changed how it is seen reputation-wise on the world stage in regards to wine production and distribution. It only suits companies to consider adding wine from new areas to their list of options as it becomes easier to find options that are affordable through some research or an online application.
The wine industry is rapidly changing, and in order to meet consumer demand, it is likely that it is going to have to look to new areas to provide wine enthusiasts the types of wines they want. Technology will provide unexplored regions with new possibilities while also helping customers an opportunity to find their new favorite wine from a place a bit off the beaten path.