Covid-19 is a hot topic in the recently released 2021 New Zealand Winegrowers Annual Report, including its impacts on the border, markets, and increasingly supply chain.
"Our premium wine story of sustainably produced and diverse wines resonates more powerfully now than ever," reads the marketing section of the recently released report.
Charlotte Read, New Zealand Winegrowers (NZW) General Manager Marketing says 2021 has been about identifying new ways to keep New Zealand wine top of mind, despite the border closures and lockdowns carried with the Covid-19 pandemic. "Our market managers are collaborating on digital campaigns, which magnify impact and reach, as well as sharing successful approaches of what works in one market with another."
The annual report says there is unique and "time-bound" opportunity to promote New Zealand's "outstanding food and beverage products", while its borders are closed to the world. The Made with Care campaign, led by New Zealand Trade and Enterprise (NZTE), helped the industry tap into that opportunity and "aligns perfectly with our industry's core focus on sustainability, valuing our people and looking after our land for future generations", says the report. The inaugural virtual New Zealand Wine Week was another tool to frame New Zealand on the global stage, and included panel discussions with New Zealand winemakers, exploring themes ranging from new and impending developments to Pinot Noir soils. The wine week also included a sustainability webinar challenging the myths around food miles, run in collaboration with the Harpers Wine & Spirit publication. Nearly 7,000 people tuned into activities during the week, while media coverage reached 111 million people. Next year the week will extend into Asia.
The annual report also looks at work done by NZW to "increase the discoverability of New Zealand wines", including the opportunity for members to have their wines listed in the New Zealand Wine Catalogue, operated by Bottlebooks, an online platform used by retailers and events such as the London Wine Fair and ProWein. "Creating platforms for our members to make global connections, especially when borders are closed, remains an important part of our role," says Charlotte. "We look forward to when it is feasible to return to face-to-face interactions once again."