Wine, Technology, and Harvest Challenges

Several different wine bottles with different labels.

Ten developments expected to guide the future of fine wine were recently outlined in an August 2017 article. The information is derived from topics discussed at a Fine Minds 4 Fine Wines conference in France that took place in June. Technology in Wine Stores and Disruptive Technologies were included in the conversation.

Technology for the Wine Industry

There are numerous groups that get together for the purpose of ensuring a future for the wine industry. Keeping up with modern technology is important. For instance, customer movement can be tracked with beacons, providing helpful information to be used for marketing purposes.

Blockchain technology is digital and operates like a distributed ledger that keeps a continuous, constant list of records. Transactions are validated and added to a chain. The chain of transactions is stored on multiple servers, creating a record that is permanent and irrevocable. Blockchain is expected to be a world-changing technology.

Using 3D printing to customize customer packaging is also considered an advanced approach to providing service in the wine industry.

Current Challenges

It’s important to strategize and plan for the future of the wine industry, especially considering that some wine regions in the U.S. are struggling. A recent problem appears to be that the legalization of marijuana in California, Oregon, and Washington, creates labor shortages for vintners in those states.

In July, during off-the-record discussions with a reporter, concerns were expressed that no one will be available to pick grapes once the harvests are ready. The majority of the help needed for harvest time comes from part-time workers who work during the season for hourly wages. Vintners are concerned that even if they raise the amount of wages paid for harvesting grapes, not enough laborers will be available.

Wine Will Never Go Out of Style

Although the industry faces struggles and should keep up with modern technology, winemaking isn’t going anywhere. Upcoming generations just need to be introduced to the joys of wine. In addition, professionals in the industry should remain diligent to ensure that winemakers are keeping up with modern technology. Whether or not there will truly be a dilemma at harvest time remains to be seen, though there is evidence that a labor shortage could hurt the U.S. industry. Whatever happens, one thing is for sure: wine will always be in season