The wine industry is surprisingly adaptable for a craft that’s been around for thousands of years. Wine-makers are flexible in modifying their processes to keep up with changing consumer demands and environmental issues. These wine trends are telling examples of the wine industry’s innovation and resilience.
1. Paper Wine Bottles
Wine company Truett-Hurst recently debuted the world’s first paper bottle of wine. The paper bottle weighs less than glass and is fully recyclable. We can’t wait to see other bottlers follow suit!
2. Boxed Wine
Boxed wine stays fresher longer, which means you waste less. And some very good wineries are starting to offer their wines in boxes either instead or or in addition to bottles. Boxing wine also reduces packaging weight, which means fewer carbon emissions to ship. So much win!
3. Charitable Wine
We love any company that gives back, and more and more wineries are pledging a portion of their profits to charity.
4. Wine on Tap
Talk about waste reduction! Instead of heavy bottles or tons of individual boxes, tap wine comes in reusable kegs, just like beer. The way the tap is designed also prevents the wine from spoiling, so restaurants don’t have to pour out unfinished bottles at the end of the evening.
5. Water Conservation at Wineries
The Silicone Valley Bank’s 2014 wine trends report talks in-depth about how California’s ongoing drought is impacting wine production (pdf). Wineries continue to respond to the water issue by finding ways to conserve and reuse water.
6. Overall Focus on Sustainability
Beyond water, wineries are finding that they can save money and appeal to new (read: younger) wine-drinkers by upping their sustainability game.
California’s Sustainable Winegrowing Alliance is a good example of this. The vast majority of California grape growers are part of this sustainability advocacy group. California’s wine-producing Sonoma County is on its way to becoming 100% sustainable.
7. Wineries on Social Media
The Internet is the great democratizer, and it’s beginning to influence the world of wine. Why is it so cool that wineries are starting to have a presence on Twitter and Facebook? That gives us as consumers more direct access to the folks running the show.
We can ask questions and give feedback, and the wineries in turn can cultivate a more loyal following. More transparency is always a good thing!
8. Vegan Wine
The increasing demand for wine made without animal products is driving innovative wineries to tout their vegan wines. Our Daily Red’s organic, vegan wine is a great example of a wine-maker that’s appealing to the vegan crowd.
9. Home Wine Delivery Services
Whether you’re new to drinking wine and aren’t sure where to start or you consider yourself a wine connoisseur with an advanced, adventurous palate, wine delivery clubs offer you new bottles, to your door, that are customized to your preferences.
Wine delivered right to your door saves you a trip to the store and takes out the guesswork of finding the right bottle for your taste. Start-ups like Firstleaf combine subscriptions with detailed quizzes to match you with wines you’re most likely to enjoy.
10. Canned Wine
While on the surface canned wine seems a little bizarre, it’s actually pretty convenient and sustainable! Individual canned wine is perfect for when you’re on the go and don’t want to be bothered with a heavy glass bottle or a corkscrew.
The cans can be recycled easily and you’ll never have a stale bottle of wine going to waste because you only wanted one after-work glass.
11. Virtual Wine Community Events
Updated for 2020, virtual wine events are becoming increasingly popular as many people are staying home and limiting their contact with others to slow the spread of Covid-19.
Whether it’s wine tasting, a wine and book club, or a simple happy hour, just because you’re spending more time at home doesn’t mean you can’t develop your palate!
Featured Image Credit: Winery photo via Shutterstock