A new business network for wine cooperatives has been created in Italy. Called The Wine Net, it’s the brainchild of oenologist Daniele Accordini, general manager of the Cantina Valpolicella Negrar. Launched in April, it was initially made up of three cooperatives - Cantina Produttori di Valdobbiadene – Val D’Oca and Cantina Volpolicella Negrar, both in Veneto, and Piedmont’s Cantina Pertinace. It has now been approached by three new cooperatives looking to join the network. A fourth has also made contact.
“We founded this network because we are convinced that working together, aiming to the same goals, is more effective than standing alone,” said Accordini.
The aim of the group is to maximise promotional opportunities in both the domestic and international markets. “This kind of group works fine if there is consistency among the members,” explained Accordini. “We all are small to medium cooperatives with a similar approach to wine production, committed to representing our regions in the best way possible.” He added that bringing a group together makes it easier to access the European public funds that are available to help with the export of Italian wines.
“The Wine Net is important for us because the work of several companies allows some important synergies, such as promoting the brands of each company at the company's sales points and optimizing the costs of internationalization” said joint founder Aldo Franchi, general manager of Cantina Produttori di Valdobbiadene – Val D’Oca.
The third founder, Cesare Barbero, general manager of Cantina Pertinace agreed, adding, “Compared to the past, the wine cooperatives’ role nowadays is totally different” Barbero said that it was important that cooperative build a new image for wholesalers, distributors and other parts of the distribution chain. “That’s why we’re trying to communicate that being a cooperative is an added value and a guarantee of quality”.
Cantina Produttori di Valdobbiadene has 600 members and 959 ha of vines and is a producer of Prosecco. The Cantina Pertinace is in the production area of Barbaresco, has just 17 members and about 100 ha of vines; it produces Barbaresco, Dolcetto d'Alba and Barbera d'Alba for a total of about 700,000 barrels per year. Cantina Valpolicella Negrar is a cooperative with 700 ha of vineyards, distributed in different areas of Valpolicella, cultivated by 230 members.
The group will next be heading to the Hong Kong fair in November.