In a press conference held this morning by the Italian Trade Commission, leading industry professionals gathered in a panel for a quick but informative overview about the future of the Italian wine industry in America.
In general, the outlook for Italian wines in America is a positive one. Fredrikson pointed out enthusiastically that the growth of wine consumption in the US is slow, but always increasing. Italian wine has its greatest strength in diversity-- both of price, and in types. In fact, 9% of the entire US wine market is Italian wine.
Both Fredrikson and Mariani-May spoke to the adaptability of Italian wine producers. While Fredrikson highlighted the increasing adaptability of laws and increasing quality of Italian wines, Mariani-May spoke to the increasing desire to "green" Italian wine, and reaching for a more "pure and natural" product.
All of the panels' participants spoke to the importance of tapping new markets-- especially "millenials," or the generation currently between the ages of 18 and 35. While LoCascio mentioned that the sweet spot for wine sales are bottles $25 and under, Colman was passionate about changing the focus of wine from a top-down trickle of information, to a more conversation-focused method.
With the above topics being expanded upon in future Vino 2011 seminars, the Italian Trade Commission has established an interesting and enlightening focus for the next three days, sure to inspire much conversation in the wine industry.