As wine supply and demand continue searching for an equilibrium, Wines Vines Analytics recently presented some data on underlying channel dynamics. Overall, they reflect ongoing softness in domestic wine sales. U.S. dollar volume in June was $3.4 billion and wine spending for the preceding 12 months reached $70 billion. But those numbers each represent a 5% drop from the same period a year ago. Off-premise and direct-to-consumer growth are offsetting some, but not yet all, of the seismic 69% downshift in on-premise sales.
And with DTC emerging during the pandemic as an even more vital channel for most Oregon wineries, don’t miss the chance to open up the OWB’s COVID-19 Toolkit and have a look under the DTC Education Resources tab. There you’ll find the summaries of three wine community discussion forums hosted over the past several weeks by WISE Academy. The sessions included insights and ideas from WISE instructors and your Oregon peers on smart management strategies for tasting rooms and wine clubs.
The importance of DTC revenue was mentioned in the industry’s letter last week to Governor Brown. She was asked to take direct sales into consideration as a component of the $6 billion Oregon wine grape and wine sector as she makes phasing decisions within her “Reopening Oregon” framework.
As we look ahead to a harvest and crush season that will demand some innovative thinking and ingenuity, a few items of interest deserve your attention:
While COVID-19 tests our resiliency, requiring agility in just about every aspect of industry operations, we remain committed to delivering another engaging, insight-rich Oregon Wine Symposium.
- The Oregon Wine Board is again offering its online Marketplace as a central location for aggregating fall internships. Post them there, then we’ll coordinate with Oregon State University and other global industry partners to help generate broader awareness of the opportunities. The Marketplace is also still the place to post bulk wines and wine grapes you may have for sale;
- The Oregon Wine Council, along with Crosswater Strategies on behalf of the Oregon Winegrowers Association, provide these links to an Agriculture and Farm Operations Toolkit and Playbook. They include suggestions for reducing the chances for virus outbreaks as well as advice on dealing with potential business interruptions that could be caused if COVID-19 presents itself in the workplace. These documents originated with state regulatory agencies including the Department of Agriculture, OSHA and the Oregon Health Authority with additional input from county health departments;
- Building on that toolkit and playbook, Oregon grape growers and winemakers have been at work drafting industry-specific supplements that will be discussed in a Zoom meeting, which is open to industry members, on the morning of Tuesday, Aug. 18. Sign up here to mark your calendar, and if you’re interested but unable to join we will share the recording afterward.
In 2021 however, we’ll deliver it to you virtually.
Mark your calendars for Feb. 16-19, 2021. The online sessions over those four days are in development now under the supervision of our industry’s Education Committee. They’ll have further information as the final schedule and speakers are locked in.