Day 10 of #100dayproject: Wine and identity.



I saw yesterday at night the documentary on HBO: “Red Obsession.” The documentary tells about wine industry in China and the changing global market as it is connected to the Chinese economy, is shared with the director Warwick Ross. The economic boom of China, faking fine wine through knock-offs and old bottles, and the fascination with French wine is, especially with Lafite and Latour wine brands.

The documentary gets a realistic view about an underline phenomenon that is happen now in eastern hemisphere: buy luxury and foreign things – wine, art, books, bags, or clothes – is the fastest way to show to the rest of the world that you are awesome and fact as you are part of an exclusive elite.

Another example for the impact that wine industry has in the economy is the quest for perfection and exclusivity. James Suckling[1] had long dream of making his own wine glass. Just like a violinist with his favorite Stradivarius, a wine critic’s particular glass is the tool of his profession. Indeed, James travels everywhere with the same wine glasses. Last year, he approached renowned French crystal-maker LALIQUE with his vision of making the perfect wine glass.

Finally, the wine is another product of luxury for the billionaire’s collections, especially for Chinese and Japanese billionaires. However, the wine industry is more than this tragic scenery. I traveled for some wine valleys in Chile and Argentina, so, I know the industry (at least in South America).


Casablanca Valley, Chile. Grape harvest festival.

The wine industry at every scale creates valuable jobs for local people, who was worked in the vineyards for centuries. Especially, in the small valleys of the arid and semiarid regions of the planet. Even the harvest festivities are a great opportunity to share the wine culture with the tourists and other people: traditional songs, dances, food, sustainability and technology through the time.

As some researchers says on an investigation about wine festivals in Australia:

Festivals have a particularly important role in rural areas struggling to arrest or prevent economic decline and seeking to develop vibrant, livable communities. Some of these places are looking to their immigrant past for inspiration, given that Australia has a rich history of immigrant settlement in rural areas.”[2]

The festivals of winery have the potential to engage the community with the producers and the tourist, given a new economic area to the local people, as:

In an increasingly competitive global market, winemakers are seeking to increase their sales and wine regions to attract tourists. To achieve these aims, there is a trend towards linking wine marketing with identity. In essence, marketing wine and wine regions has become increasingly about telling stories which engage consumers and tourists and translate into sales[3].”


[2]Laing, Jennifer; Frost, Warwick. 2013. Tourism Analysis, 18(3) :323-334. DOI:

[3] Harvey, Matt; Leanne White and Warwick Frost. 2014. Wine and Identity: Branding, Heritage, Terroir. Routledge Studies of Gastronomy, Food and Drink.


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