Free the Grapes!

    September 16, 2013

Update as of September 16, 2013

The 7th annual summit on direct marketing and sales will take place January 22-3, 2014, at the South San Francisco Conference Center.

What’s new for 2014? A lot! What follows is a brief update of the program schedule:

January 22: 2:00pm – 6:00pm

  • User group meetings for club managers and tasting room managers
  • An update on current DTC research
  • “State of Wine Tourism” session moderated by Brian Baker, Chateau Montelena, and including panelists Lynn Carpenter, VP Marketing, Visit California, and Chris Thornberg, Founding Partner, Beacon Economics, who will present the latest economic trends and a new research tool designed for winery associations and their members
  • Wine Reception and Trade Show.

January 23: 8:30am – 3:45pm

  • “State of the States” preview of the coming year in legislative initiatives by Steve Gross, Vice President State Relations, Wine Institute
  • Keynote and research presentations: Speakers and topics to be announced soon
  • Trade Show: Review all the key suppliers in one place, at one time
  • Workshop Sessions:
    • Wine Club Makeover: How to Refresh Your Wine Club
    • The Tasting Room Experience: Mapping Your Guest Journey
    • Social Media: Creating Your Editorial Calendar
    • Leadership: Taking Charge of Your DTC Career
  • 3:45: We’ll have you back on the road.

As of early September, trade sponsorships are nearly 50% sold out.

Register Now to Enjoy Early Bird Discount: . Check the website for updates on topics, speakers and moderators, as well as a return of the Video Contest for 2014!

The DTC Wine Symposium has funded Free the Grapes! actions this year including a press blitz in Boston, participation at Boston Wine Expo and Wine Riot, and thousands of letters of support from consumers to their state representatives. Net income also funds litigation – e.g., Massachusetts – coordinated by Coalition for Free Trade. These two organizations have worked successfully with local associations and industry representatives to increase the number of legal states from 17 to 40, representing 89.5% of wine consumption.

Massachusetts: Summer Ends without Hearing on DTC Bills
Industry representatives anticipate that the state legislature will reconvene in mid-September and schedule a hearing on the favorable House Bill 294. Please continue to encourage your consumers to visit and take two minutes to write their legislators. Just click here for copy that you can use, or visit the Massachusetts tab on our site.

Pennsylvania:  DTC Shipping to be considered this fall
In June, the House passed House Bill 121, which allows DTC shipment but includes the problematic tax rates previous mentioned here. Like Massachusetts, industry reps anticipate more action on several favorable DTC bills this fall. You may have seen some recent press coverage indicating bi-partisan support for legal wine shipments. (Note that active bills are not part of the debate over privatization.)

ACTION: Include a paragraph on PA in your upcoming consumer e-newsletter. We need consumer support letters. Just click here for copy to use.