Change agenda includes new thinking

Smarter pricing strategies and innovative routes to market must be part of the change agenda for Australian wine.
That message will ring loud and clear when the industry gathers in Melbourne for the biennial Winemakers' Federation of Australia Wine Industry Outlook Conference on October 23 and 24.
The program will include a keynote address on how important it is to be strategic in your approach to pricing and the presentation of WFA-commissioned research mapping the scope and performance of expanding online sales channels.
'Our focus is not on the need to change but the way to change if we are to establish a platform for success and sustainability across the sector,' WFA chief executive Paul Evans said. 'We have put together a comprehensive program examining the shifts in global competition, consumer sentiment, sales channel options, markets and marketing that impact on us all.
'As the wine supply cycle begins to turn, everyone involved with making and marketing wine needs to be clear about where Australia's future success lies and how their businesses are positioned.'
Leading wine writer, educator and critic Jeremy Oliver will guide proceedings during the conference and will moderate a major panel discussion on day one focusing on how successful wine businesses will look and act in the future.
'As in 2010, when we first expanded Outlook to two days, we have sought to get the right mix of big picture thinking and hands-on skills development,' Evans said. 'I think the workshop program on day two offers something for everyone.'
Workshop options include a marketing bootcamp, financial survival advice and strategies for building winning brands or turning a website into an online cellar door. Beijing-based distributor Campbell Thompson will deliver a plenary address on the ins and outs of the China market, then host an interactive Q&A workshop.
The day one program will mix hard data from Rabobank and Nielsen with insights from international presenters Mike Paul, Chris Savage and Lulie Halstead, who was voted the standout presenter at Outlook in 2010.
Paul, a leading wine consultant who represented Southcorp when it became the UK wine market leader by value, will revisit his 2007 prophecy that Australia's success would be its undoing because it was too easy for others to replicate.
Savage, who directs all environmental compliance efforts for the world's largest family-owned winery, E&J Gallo, will examine the growing social pressures on wine's legitimacy.
And Halstead, the CEO of strategy consultants Wine Intelligence, will present new insights on how social and cultural drivers underwrite consumer demand for wine and the opportunities this presents for marketing wine as more than just another fast-moving consumer good.
The Change Agenda will be held in the Melbourne Conference & Exhibition Centre. Further information and online registrations are available on the conference website, which can be accessed via the WFA site at

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