Thursday, March 31, 2005

The French Wine Industry - Will it Implode or Explode?

(and in this context, what is the difference between an implosion and an explosion? I'm not sure...).

Harper's reports that the French Resistancé is alive and well as is the French version of freedom of expression. While some of this reminds me of the first villain in 'The Incredibles' - Bomb Voyage, the explosive Frenchman - it continues to raise questions about the current state of the French wine industry and what can be done to fix it. US restaurant reports show that consumption of French wines has risen slightly (the unofficial boycott is off?) but that France, as a category, continues to slide. The French, having been passed in the US market by the Aussies in 2002, have done little to counteract their downward slide beyond raging against the machine that is new-world wines. Obviously, that raging has gone to another level.

How far will this go? (Destroying inventories?…entire Chateaus?) And what will it achieve?

When you look at current proposed solutions to the problem, you can see that they are not addressing the problem. Another Harper's article suggests that the majority of the €70 million in government funding program goes to debt relief, and if so it does little to solve the current problems the French are having in selling their wines.

There is another recent program that puts €3 million into marketing efforts, but that's less than Gallo has likely spent on marketing efforts for its new French import alone.Ironically, Gallo is reported to have shipped over 200,000 (!) cases of its first run of
red bicyclette. Gallo knows what they are doing in building brands, and wouldn't it be incredibly ironic if they ended up saving the "table-wine" portion of the French wine industry?
That's too much, even for me....


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September 30, 2005 6:29 PM  
Anonymous Rocket French said...

French wine makers face competitive vins du nouveau monde which should not be underestimated. Moreover, the wine consumption is declining in France in favor of soft drinks.

August 01, 2011 7:19 PM  

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