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GWTO supports AEE in the co-organization of the 2nd edition of the ‘Vino y Mar’ Fair (VIMAR)

With the support of the Global Wine Organization (GWTO) for the participation of international wine destinations in which the sea is also an attraction, the Spanish EnoTourism Association (AEE-Enotourism Spain) organized the tourism (EnoTourism) area, coordinating the Forum ‘The Sea in EnoTourism’, providing speakers, exhibitors and tour operators for business meetings.

Likewise, through GWTO, the International and Ibero-American Academies of Gastronomy (based in Paris and Madrid respectively), in the figure of Mr. Rafael Ansón as their Founder President of Honor, show their support to VIMAR.

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The fair, promoted and co-organized in the product area by Azahara de Comunicaciones group, held its second edition on the 13th and 14th, in the Congress and Exhibition Center in Ayamonte, making the coastal town a commercial, gastronomic and tourist reference during these days.

The event was born in 2022 as a professional reference in the conjunction of these two first level gastronomic sectors, the products of Wine and Sea, with the support of the Andalusian Tourism company of the Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport of the Andalusian Government, the close collaboration of the City Hall of Ayamonte, the DD.OO.PP. Wines and Vinegars of Condado de Huelva, with the participation of more than 40 companies, entities and organizations of the aforementioned sectors: tourism, wine and sea.

The founder and president of the EnoTourism associations, José Antonio Vidal, said that “it is about sharing knowledge and experience in national and international wine tourism, in a great event linked to the exquisite gastronomy of the province of Huelva and the whole of Andalusia, which is recognized worldwide. The aim is to promote the socio-economic development of wine tourism destinations and their brands”.

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The fair’s full program includes the Training Area, where there will be seminars and round tables on ‘The Sea in Wine Tourism’, where you can learn more from leading professionals in the sector: Bodegas González-Byass, Bodega Berroja, Bodega Nilva, Musclarium, Ví D’Anfora (SeaWines), Celler Vinyes del Tiet Pere, Adega EcoAlga, Cantina San Salvatore 1880.

In parallel, more than 10 showcooking, tasting and harmonies activities took place in the Tasting and Demonstrations Area, and B2B professional meetings were held in the Business Area.

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Official visit of the Global Wine Tourism Organization to Georgia

GWTO President José Antonio Vidal met with Kakha Kakabadze, Vice Minister of Environment and Agriculture, with David Songulashvili, Chair of the Sector Economy and Economic Policy Committee at Parliament of Georgia, with Levan Andriashvili, Mayor of Telavi (Kakheti), with Levan Mekhuzla and Zurab Vacharadze, President and Vice-President of the National Wine Agency, with Kakha and Vakhtang Tsivtsicpvdze, President and Director of the Caucasus International University, and with Kety Gorgiladze, co-founder of the Georgian EnoTourism Association (GETA).

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During the meetings, the importance of the development of enotourism in Georgia and the quality of wine was emphasised.

“Georgia is a country with an 8000 year old wine tradition. We attach special importance to this rich history, working to improve the quality of wine and increase its export. It is also relevant to note that tourism is experiencing rapid growth in the country; both tourism and the thriving wine industry drive our economy. Sharing best practices in any field, including enotourism, is a necessary and important condition for development,” Kakha Kakabadze stressed.

“Enotourism is gaining popularity globally, and this goes beyond wine tasting. Tourists also enjoy exploring vineyards, and Kakheti is the ideal place to boost this facet of tourism. With Mr Vidal, we discussed prospects for future collaboration. For us, it is crucial to share and benefit from his wisdom and experience. Mutual cooperation promotes positioning Georgia as one of the world’s leading enotourism destinations,” said Levan Andriashvili, Mayor of Telavi.

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The President of GWTOn visited the Caucasus International University. José Antonio Vidal met with CIU leaders and discussed with them the main aspects of future cooperation focused on the implementation of joint academic and educational projects in enotourism management.

During his visit to CIU, the president of GWTO visited the library, the multimedia centre, the material and technical base of the faculty of business and viticulture and oenology, the laboratories and the “Kolkhi” winery where guests learned about the production process of the university company “Ethno-Okami”, the potential of converting the existing spaces into a tourist area and the traditions of Georgian winemaking.

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“GWTO’s main objective is the socio-economic development of wine regions. To this end, we promote enotourism destinations in order to position them in global markets. The awareness and participation of all chain actors is fundamental in this process. We offer support to both the public and private sectors, as well as to the academic sphere: Strategic Plans, brand creation, MICE organization, booking platform, quality certification and professional training,” said José Antonio Vidal.

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1st EnoTourism Forum in Abrau-Durso (Krasnodar, Russia)

The 1st EnoTourism Forum, the largest wine tourism industry event in Russia, took place in Abrau-Durso on May 12 and 13. It was promoted and organized by the Abrau-Durso Tourism Centre with the support of the Global Wine Tourism Organization (GWTO) and the International Center for Wine and Gastronomy (ICWAG), bringing together more than 400 professionals from 11 countries.

Abrau-Durso owner and Forum promoter Boris Titov commented on his company’s position as the largest enotourism centre, “Abrau is a notable player in this segment in Russia and even in the world. But we will also stop developing if there are not many small and medium sized signature, boutique designed wineries. Enotourists don’t go to a wine region to visit one winery, they are interested in exploring the whole wine province”.

GWTO President José Antonio Vidal gave an overview of current trends enotourism at a new level, praised “the potential of enotourism both in the world and in Russia”, and called it the “industry of happiness: tourism, gastronomy, culture and leisure. GWTO welcomes all stakeholders in the development of enotourism: governmental and public bodies, wine producers, tourism companies, industry associations and academia”.

Leonid Gelibterman, GWTO Vice President for Eurasia: “Based on its own history and following the trends of the modern world, Russian enotourism can successfully compete on the international market and develop an (eno)gastronomic culture in Russian society.

The participants of the Forum discussed the development of enotourism in the Russian wine regions, described the main problems and possible solutions. It was, in particular, promotion and commercialization (through GWTO MICE events and EnoWineClub reservations platform), International Quality Certificate on customer experience (by GWTO Q seal), training of qualified personnel and wine tourism guides (GWTO Academy), creation of a unified map of wine routes (GWTO Advisors), improvement of legislation, economic efficiency and accessibility of transport.

Leonid Popovich, GWTO Director for Russia, stressed the particular importance of the cooperation of market players: only together will it be possible to achieve positive changes.

Within the framework of the Forum, an important event for national enotourism took place: the first three Russian wineries were awarded certificates of membership in the Global Wine Tourism Organization: Abrau-Durso, Château de Talu and WinePark received their certificates.

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Joining the international organization will provide opportunities for exchange of experiences, training with GWTO Academy, hosting events, international wine tourism quality certification, participating in the global wine tourism booking platform and advice on creating national and regional enotourism associations.

GWTO Vice President for Latin America, Pablo Singerman, gave an overview of the state of enotourism in different countries of the region. He drew attention to an important point: an “oenological” tourist spends on average 56% more than a regular tourist.

Sergei Danilov, Director of GWTO in Uzbekistan, spoke about the connection of enotourism with gastronomy, as well as with the history and culture of individual countries and regions.

A real eye-opener for many forum participants was the speech by GWTO China Director Jiawei Jiang on the impressive pace of development of oenology and enotourism in China where GWTO President will participate in the Yantai International Expo on June 16 and 17.

Ceylan Sensoy, Marketing Director of the Turkish Tourism Promotion and Development Agency, spoke about her country’s emerging enotourism regions.

I GWTO Global Summit to be held in Uruguay

Arnaldo Nardone, GWTO MICE Director, presented the 1st GWTO Global Summit on EnoTourism to be held in Spring 2024 in Punta del Este (Uruguay).

“Uruguay is honoured to host the first GWTO Global Summit next year. We are very grateful that our country has been chosen to host it -said Daniel Rubén Castillos, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Eastern Republic of Uruguay to the Russian Federation.

Personnel make the difference

A panel was dedicated to the topic of Training and Talent in the field of enotourism. Moderated by Elena Didenko, director of the GWTO Academy in Russia, Russian experts together with the directors of the GWTO Academy in Portugal and Chile, Bebiana Monteiro and Jorge Espinosa, respectively, addressed the lack of qualified personnel.

“Every employee who meets a tourist must be highly professional. In entourism specially, a guide must not only be an excellent communicator, but also capable of transmitting emotions,” José Antonio Vidal stressed.

It is envisaged that the EnoTourism Forum will become an annual meeting place for wine tourism industry professionals in Russia and other countries.

GWTO invited by Russian authorities

The president CEO of the Global Wine Tourism Organization (GWTO) José Antonio Vidal, got Russia despite all the difficulties of traveling during the pandemic. The main purpose of his visit was to hold meetings with representatives of the russian public, private and academic sectors.

Mr. Vidal’s trip started in the city of Perm (Ural region), where he participated in the Russian Culinary and Services Olympiad «Legend». Chefs from all over Russia, including regions with great potential for the development of wine tourism, took part in the Culinary Olympiad.

The opening ceremony was attended by Governor of Perm Krai,Dmitry Makhonin, the president of the National Culinary Association of Russia, Victor Belyaev, and Leonid Gelibterman, GWTO Director for Central EurAsia region and president of the russian International Center of Wine and Gastronomy. In the opening ceremony, José Antonio Vidal said: “On behalf of the GWTO I congratulate all participants and organizers of the Olympiad and wish success to the National Culinary Association of Russia. I bring you also greetings and best wishes from Rafael Ansón, Honorary President of the GWTO and President of Honor of the International Academy of Gastronomy”.

Together with Yulia Vetoshkina, Minister of Tourism and Youth Policy of the Perm Krai, and Yulia Rybakova, Adviser to the Head of the Russian Federal Agency for Tourism (Rostourism), José Antonio Vidal took part in the panel discussion ‘Development of gastronomic tourism in Russia’, moderated by Leonid Gelibterman, in which Mr. Vidal stressed that “wine tourism -matching with gastronomy proposals- is the real motor for agritourism destinations”, offering GWTO support for its socio-economic development.

José Antonio Vidal gave as well a master class about wine tourism for professors and students of the Higher School of Economics, one of the leading universities in Russia with campus in Perm, Moscow and Saint Petersburg.

GWTO president had a useful and important meeting with the Minister of Tourism and Youth Policy of the Perm Krai, Yulia Vetoshkina, who appreciated the potential of cooperation with the GWTO for the development of agritourism in the Perm Region, planning to include in the next meeting the Ministers of Culture and Agriculture, as well as the academic sector of Perm. As a joke -but, as we know, every joke has its share of truth-, Ms. Vetoshkina suggested opening a GWTO office in Perm.

In Moscow, José Antonio Vidal held four important negotiations with the main national stakeholders.

The president of the Union of Winegrowers and Winemakers of Russia,Leonid Popovich, who said: “We discussed the benefits of GWTO membership for producers who are members of the Union of Winegrowers and Winemakers of Russia”. Mr. Popovich described the possibilities of cooperation as fantastic: “We also discussed the prospects of cooperation between the GWTO Academy and Russian universities because the Union of Winegrowers and Winemakers is interested in increasing the professional level of the industry participants”. 

From the Government of the Russian Federation, the Adviser to the Head of the Russian Federal Agency for Tourism (Rostourism), Yulia Rybakova, will organize meetings among GWTO with the Ministers of Tourism of the Russian wine regions.

From the academic side, the Rector of the Moscow State University of Tourism and Sports, Masyagina Natalia Vasilievna, has also shown her interest in the educational field of the GWTO Academy.

Finally, José Antonio Vidal held a meeting with the Director of Simple Wine Travel Agency, Natalia Zhestkova, the main outcoming wine tourism touroperator in Russia.

About GWTO

A Global wine, agri and gastro Tourism Business and Knowledge Network, comprising the whole agritourism value chain located in wine destinations -related to ‘wine’ in its broader sense-, the public sector and the academic by GWTO Academy. GWTO has been created to enhance the social-economic development of wine tourism destinations and its residents through strategic value propositions, as part of an inclusive and supportive governance framework, based on the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development Goals.

More info: Julia Smirnova
[email protected]

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