db’s guide to this year’s London Wine Fair


Copyright: Anthony Upton 2016©

Although Brexit fatigue may have set in for some, the show’s registration poll showed that exchange rates, duty on wine, and the EU trade deal are of considerable concerns to visitors, so a highlight of the event is bound to be Grapevine Debate on Brexit on Monday 22 May. This will see two sitting MPs, Labour remainer Andy Slaughter and Tory Brexiteer Tim Loughton, and Miles Beale of the WSTA debate the issues in a session chaired by editor and Grapevine editor Richard Siddle.

Other briefings will look at innovation in wine branding and marketing, with Off-Piste Wine and Morrison’s buyer Gemma Cockshot, the crucial role played by independent importers, as well as an industry update with the WSTA. The LWF will also play host to the premiere of a documentary on the wines of the Southern Hemisphere, followed by a Q&A with director Dan James and New Zealand winemaker Larry McKenna of Escarpment.

Another key highlight of the fair is the annual Drinks Business Awards, which recognises the achievements of the industry over the past year across the whole sector, from retailer to importers, along with awards for logistics, design and marketing. This week saw the publication of the awards shortlist, and the winners will be announced at the ceremony, which takes place between 4 and 6pm on Tuesday 23 May at the London Wine Fair. For 2017, Champagne Nicolas Feuillatte will be sponsoring a special award called The Other Side of Life, which recognises and celebrates members of the UK wine trade who have brought innovation and dynamism into the sector, while our sister title, The Spirits Business will be sponsoring the Alan Lodge Award for the Young Drinks Writer of the Year.

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