It was supposed to be the year of the return to normalcy, and we hope it can really be, but the first days of this 2022 place everyone in front of the same problems and dynamics as a year ago, albeit with decidedly more rosy prospects. The pandemic continues to bite, with numbers never seen before, “normalized” by the beneficial effect of vaccines, which are making the new wave of Covid sustainable, suggesting yet another rethinking of the calendar of great wine & food events, to guarantee not only safety, but also participation, from Italy and abroad.
Starting from the “Wine previews”, a fundamental moment to get to know and promote on the markets the latest vintages of the great appellations of the Belpaese, according to well-accredited rumors, intercepted by WineNews, it goes towards the postponement, practically certain, “Grandi Langhe”, kermesse signed by the Consortium of Barolo Barbaresco Alba Langhe and Dogliani, in partnership with that of Roero, scheduled for January 31 and February 1. The most plausible and common sense option is a shift between ProWein in Dusseldorf (27-29 March) and Vinitaly (10-13 April): a lot will depend on the availability of the spaces of the Ogr – Officine Grandi Riparazioni in Turin, a splendid location chosen to present the new vintages of Barolo and Barbaresco. Which, on the other hand, will be revealed to US wine professionals on March 15 and 16 in Los Angeles, with “Barolo & Barbaresco World Opening”, confirmed to date on the calendar. As well as the US stage of “Benvenuto Brunello”, which will be in New York, in the setting of the Altman Building, on February 23 and 24, with a very exclusive business-to-business format and on the model of the one staged in November 2021 in Montalcino: in all there will be 50 producers, of which 23 in attendance, contingent admissions to 80 professionals in the sector per session (for two sessions per day ), which will be served at the table, in maximum safety.
To share the same destiny as “Grandi Langhe”, also according to rumors WineNews, is “Preview Amarone 2017”, which the Consortium for the protection of Valpolicella wines had planned for 4 and 5 February (and where the physical presence of producers was not already foreseen, ed). The official decision is expected next week, when the board will meet and decide on the new dates.
In a few days, however, probably by this weekend, it will be known even if it will be confirmed in the current dates, ie from 12 February to 18 February, the “Week of Previews of Wines of Tuscany”. Which, as scheduled, should start on the evening of Saturday 12 February, in the “Salone dei Cinquecento” in Palazzo Vecchio in Florence, with the great gala dinner with all the consortia gathered, and then the events between Florence and the different territories, with tastings and presentations of Chianti, Chianti Classico, Vernaccia di San Gimignano, Nobile di Montepulciano and other Tuscan denominations.From what WineNews learns, Avito, the association that brings together all the wine consortia of the Grand Duchy, and the Tuscany Region, met in the past few hours and decided to give themselves a few more days to evaluate what to do and find the solution. smarter in a complicated situation. The common will of all would be to give life to the event, but various aspects related to the contingent and constantly changing situation are being evaluated. Keeping the week on the dates currently scheduled, would mean, let’s play, go to a little attended event, with a reduced international press presence compared to the expectations and adhesions reached so far (more or less with the formula seen in May 2021, with print selected by invitation only and limited places by reservation for operators) due to the limitations imposed by growth of infections not only in Italy, but throughout Europe and the United States, with an investment by the Consortia themselves and the Region, however important, as much as and perhaps even more than the canonical previews, for an event that would have a shorter duration than waited. The hypothesis that seems to be making its way is, therefore, that of a postponement to May, just as happened a year ago, even if, being a 6-day event and developed in several locations, postponing it is not so simple.. In this way, the impasse of a particularly busy calendar, which cannot ignore the major international fairs (i.e. ProWein, in Dusseldorf, scheduled from 27 to 29 March, and Vinitaly, in Verona, scheduled from 10 to 13 April, would be overcome. ), but the availability of some spaces on dates other than those currently scheduled has to be checked. In the next few days, however, an official decision will be made, even if the logic and sentiment collected allow us to imagine important changes compared to what is expected to date.
In the exhibition field, however, the last two appointments to slip, in order of time, are the Sigep (International Exhibition of Ice Cream, Pastry, Artisan Bakery and Coffee), scheduled for January and on stage at the Rimini Fair from 12 to 16 March , and the International Tourism Exchange, an important moment of confrontation also for the world of wine, between wine tourism and travel trends for the future, also scheduled for January, and rescheduled, at Fiera Milano City, from 10 to 12 April .
From VeronaFiere, on the other hand, the decision to postpone Fieragricola, edition no. 115, initially scheduled from 26 to 29 January, and rescheduled from 2 to 5 March 2022. Vinitaly 2022, confirmed in Verona on 10/13 April, in 4 months, is not under discussion, while rumors see the realization of of Vinexpo Wine Paris, currently scheduled in just over a month, from 14 to 16 February in Paris, while the ProWein in Dusseldorf (from 27 to 29 March) seems safe from possible movements, when the peak of the fourth wave, according to experts expected between late January and early February, it should be reasonably far away.
It should be emphasized that, in the case of Veronafiere (which will also move Progetto Fuoco forward, initially scheduled between 26 and 29 February), the decision to postpone some events, in particular those of a “business to business” nature, i.e. dedicated to business , is due to the desire to “guarantee the international quality of events”, given that events of a more “national” nature and more aimed at consumers, such as the “Moto Bike Expo”, which will be staged regularly “with the rules and protocols in force and in compliance with them, from 13 to 16 January “. A decision taken “in agreement with the production chains and in line with the choices also adopted by the other main European trade fair organizers in the face of the increase in infections at a global level”, explains a note from the Verona fair, which adds: “the variations in Veronafiere’s winter calendar has been shared with trade associations and exhibitors and relate to business-to-business reviews at an international level. The aim of the postponements, in fact, is to guarantee an adequate presence from abroad of companies and specialized operators who today, otherwise, would not be able to participate due to the travel restrictions caused by the pandemic situation. Thanks to the prevention protocols validated by the CTS and continuously updated and in compliance with the provisions of the “Covid 19 Protocol” of the Aefi trade association (Italian Exhibition and Fair Association), Veronafiere has resumed its activities in the presence and in maximum safety since June 2021, with the special edition of “Moto Bike Expo”. You can only enter the fair with a super green pass: a system that has proved its worth even in consumer reviews for the general public, such as the latest edition of Fieracavalli “.
A path, that of Veronafiere, also undertaken in these hours by Bologna Fiere for “Marca”, the show dedicated to the retailer’s brand, which was scheduled for January 19th and 20th. Soon, explains a note from the Bologna fair, the new dates will be announced, but the choice, also in this case, came with the aim of ensuring a presence of Italian and foreign buyers in line with the standards of the event, and was taken in agreement with Adm – Modern Distribution Association, “even after extensive discussions with exhibitors and operators, it deemed it appropriate to postpone the leading national event for the MDD sector to spring. The more than 900 companies, which have joined this event (edition n.18), will thus be able to count in a context in which, following the rapid advancement of vaccination campaigns, the current situation of uncertainty will be overcome and re-established also international connections “.
And, on the other hand, this is the orientation that all the most important Italian trade fair players are following, as explained by Maurizio Danese, president of Aefi – Italian Exhibition and Fair Association (and of Veronafiere): “Like Aefi, we met the Board of Directors yesterday and took stock of the situation a bit. And it emerged that, in a responsible way given the situation, almost all the fairs are moving the events scheduled in January and partly also in February to the following months. Our fairs, however, are held in a condition of maximum safety “, explains the Danish president, according to whom” there was no particular difficulty in moving the fair events to the following months, there was no problem of overlapping with other manifestations. There may be difficulties for exhibitors who may not be interested in attending an event in the following months, when the product market has already been set up “, concludes Danese.