Eva Hradilova, Alsace&bourgogne (Czech Republic)
Which is the potentiality of the Italian wine in your market?
Italian wine has got a very good reputation, but wines from New World are strong competitors and people/consumers who are not wine experts quite often prefer these wines since they are usually cheaper.
Could you tell me which is (are) the new popular wine(s) in your market? (Italian or not)
Local wines from South Moravia and New World wines – see above. Italian wines are also quite popular but most of them are from the low end category, say up to 5 euros. However, upclass restaurants and real wine lovers do not mind to spend much more – our best selling Italian items are wine icons such as Brunello di Montalcino, Amarone and Barolo.
Which is the main sales channel in your Country?
Supermarkets and wine shops. E-shops still represent only a small part of sales. People who drink wine on regular or even daily basis usually go directly to wine producers (local wines) or direct importers.
How do you think the Italian producers could improve the perception of Italian wine in your market?
I believe that emphasizing of Italian wine tradition and quality should bet he key element of the strategy. Long history of Italian wine making and connection with famous Italian gastronomy are definitely unbeatable advantages. Italin wines have specific character and individuality that wines from the New World can hardly offer.
What do you think about wine rating in the main guides. Could it helps to sell the wine?
Yes. Good ratings help especially with customers who are not just a simple consumers but have deeper interest and knowledge of wines. These people love to discuss about wines and ratings are usually first guidance where to bo for the best quality.
What about the wine knowledge of consumers in your market? Which is the trend?
Traditionally, Czech Republic is beer and spirits drinking country. But slowly and disctinctly we can see that this trend keeps changing. This is something what we can easily see in the statistics – wine consumption in our country almost doubled over the past decade. General knowledge is improving and people learn to distinguish between good and poor wines
Which are the main mistakes of the Italian producers?
Perhaps they rely too much on good quality and tradition itself but do not support their sales channels through advertising and other promotional activities. Without proper knowledge of quality many customers therefore go for cheaper wines.
Do you have any suggestions for new producers that aim to introduce their wines in your market?
Our costumers love personal stories – thanks to such sories they develop their personal relation to specific wine region, winemaker or even wine. Wine or winemaker with specific personal story helps the customer to connect the wine with history of given region, helps to understand its personality.
Which is the wine Country with the strongest growing trend in your market?
Our market is overloaded by cheap stuff from the new world. However, Italian wines go up in recent years and I believe that Italian wines will soon become the fastest growing.
Eva Hradilova, Alsace&bourgogne (Repubblica Ceca)