Innovation in Wine

We are so lucky to live in one of Ontario’s wine regions.  The weather conditions and long growing season are right for growing grapes that produce some pretty good wines.  Within a couple hours drive, you can visit any of the fine vineyards who are always open to tastings and tours.

Now, my friends from the Niagara region will undoubtedly question whether or not they’re the true home of Ontario wine and, to them, I would invite them to take part in our local wine festival.

Like most industries, there is a constant research and development to improve the product and its value to consumers.  And, you’ve got to get the most from your grapes.  A recent drive to Leamington experienced the “gun shots” that keep the birds away from the crops as they mature at this time of year.  Among the list of innovations over the years, you have to add plastic corks, recyclable containers, screw-on caps to the list.  Competition and innovation have made the cost and variety of wine selections a viable product to go with dinners and gatherings.

So, what’s the next step?  What’s the next way to make the product more accessible?  What happens when environmentalists meet wine makers?

You have to read this article then…

Imagine bringing your own recyclable container to your local supermarket and filling it by yourself to take home?  Imagine the cost savings if you remove the bottling, corking, transportation, and packaging from the mix?  Imagine just paying for the end product!

When you think about it, it does make a great deal of sense.  For the wine snob, it will take the ceremony that goes with opening, testing, smelling the cork, etc. that intimidates the uninitiated.  Undoubtedly, there still would be a market for this with wines that need to be aged for a long time.  But, it would make the product much more accessible to those who just want a glass of wine at home with supper.  If you think about the consumer wine process that you witness on any tour of a mass production winery, it’s what is done now anyway.  Wine is aged and stored in large containers until bottled.

The result addresses the needs of many consumers and potentially a wider market.  Isn’t that what innovation about?  It’s amazing what can be done when you just step away from a process and wonder what could be done if you don’t follow the traditional rules.  This is proof that “We’ve always done it this way” isn’t always the only answer.

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