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WineFuture 2021: back to address global wine issues

WineFuture 2021: back to address global wine issues

The world has moved on a great deal since the inaugural WineFuture event was held in Rioja in 2009. At the time it was the first of its kind. An attempt to bring the global wine industry’s most prominent and influential figures together, from producers, brand owners, importers, retailers to critics and media. The event was repeated in 2011 in Hong Kong, but not since. Until now with the news it is to return in a new online webinar format in February 2021. Here’s what to expect.

Richard Siddle
19th October 2020by Richard Siddle
posted in Conference,

Pancho Campo is returning to the global wine scene with WineFuture 2021 to be held online between February 23 to 25. The Buyer is pleased to have signed up as UK media partner for the event.

With such disruption and change taking place across the global wine industry, the sector needs to spend as much time as it can talking to each other, and learning from the some of the most influential and important figures it has.

With international travel still so restricted due to Covid-19 it means we are having to the majority of our talking online, often from the comfort of our homes. But it does not make the conversations and the topics of debate any less serious. In fact the impact that Covid-19 has had on our global wine supply systems means we need asmany opportunities to come together as we can.

Robert Parker was one of the big attractions for the 2011 event in Hong Kong that even included a tasting by him with over 1,000 paid guests

In fact the nature of the virus means it has ironically become easier to connect with people around the world and has opened up the industry’s most important events – like WineFuture – to a much bigger audience, and diverse audience, that would physically be able to attend.

Rather than having to fly to the other side of the world at great expense and part with a few hundred pounds to take part, WineFuture 2021 is available at a much more affordable $65 for an early bird ticket.

WineFuture 2021: what to expect

For those that were able to attend the 2009 and 2011 events WineFuture really does do what it says on the tin. Take a detailed look at the challenges and opportunities that the wine industry has now, and then look to set out a road map to how we are going to address and meet them in the future.

Or as the organisers say: “The goal of the event is to offer solutions and inspiration to those in the wine industry who are suffering the effects of the pandemic, the economic recession and the climate crisis.”

That’s quite a big ambition to tackle the Big Three – recession, climate change and Covid-19 – at one event, which is why it is stretched over three days.

To help address those issues WineFuture 2021 has already drawn up an impressive list of keynote speakers.None more so than the event’s two keynote speakers:

Irina Bokova the director general of Unesco will look at how countries can work closer together for the common good

  • Francis Ford Coppola, film director and wine producer.
  • Irina Bokova, the ninth Unesco Secretary General.

Other major producers and names lined up to speak include:

  • Antonio Amorim – Amorim.
  • Adrian Bridge – Fladgate Partnership.
  • Selena Cuffe – SodexoMAGIC’s.
  • Eduardo Chadwick, Viña Errázuriz.
  • Pierre Corvisier, JF Hillebrand.
  • Frederico Falcâo – ViniPortugal.
  • Margareth Henríquez – LVMH.
  • Prof. Greg Jones – Linfield College.

Leticia Chacón-Rodríguez – UC-Davis

  • Leticia Chacón-Rodríguez – UC-Davis.
  • Robert Joseph – Wine producer and commentator.
  • Aurelio Montes – Vina Montes.
  • David Pearson – Meadowood Estate.
  • Stephen Rannekleiv – Rabobank.
  • Siobhan Thompson – Wines of South Africa.
  • Pau Roca – OIV.
  • Stevie Kim – Vinitaly.
  • Mike Veseth – The Wine Economist.
  • You can see a full list here.

Gary Vaynerchuk, left, was one of the keynote speakers at the first event in 2009 before he went on to create his successful media and branding agency

Between them they will be looking to hold talks, and take part in panel debates and presentations that look to:

  • Analyse the short, medium and long term impact of Covid-19.
  • What are going to be the financial strategies that wine businesses need to look at in the years to come.
  • The supply chain challenges that are going to test an already stretched and over supplied market where drinking habits and volume sales of wine are changing around the world.
  • Sustainability and the wine industry challenge around climate change.
  • How to engage with new and younger consumers.
  • The need to fast track digital marketing skills and social media.
  • Future for trade exhibitions and tastings.
  • Logistics and global supply chain and shipping.
  • Opportunities around wine tourism.
  • What we can learn from other sectors and change in consumer trends.
  • Collaboration in business versus competition.

Francis Ford Coppola speaking at the 2011 event in Hong Kong

Pancho Campo, founder of WineFuture, says the reason the event was originally set up in 2009 was to help “answer many of the questions that wine professionals had about the severe economic recession the world was facing” at the time.

“WineFuture 2021 returns with a large coterie of this business’s most influential people, and the same spirit of sharing knowledge in a time that is even more threatening,” he adds.