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The week that was

Published:  13 September, 2018

In case you missed some of the headlines this week on, here’s a review of the top online news, analysis, opinions and features.

Top stories: Stories ranged from every part of the supply chain this week: from production methods all the way through to our Top 50 Wholesalers list - which continued to be our most read story - all the way to the front line of drinks service in the casual dining sector.

Heading to the vineyard, we returned to the topic of biodynamic winemaking with Dr Richard Smart, which resulted in some lively debate on our website and Harpers’ Twitter account.

The Australian viticulturist has been vocal in criticising the organic and biodynamic movements – the latter of which he said has been borne from the increasing 'panic' about the use of fungicides in vineyard management and sulphur dioxide in winemaking.

He did however recognise how the power of consumer interest in certain health conscious and natural products could lead producers to these methods.

Analysis and Insights:
October 18, the date which is supposed to tie up legal loose ends and pave the way for a Brexit transition period, is fast approaching.

Which is why we here at Harpers decided now was a good time to take a breath and reflect on what has happened since the 2016 referendum vote, with our definitive survey on views and approaches to Brexit.

Through a list of curated questions, the survey aimed to discover not only how businesses have had to adapt, but to find out what they are doing to prepare for the various outcomes – with the hope that it can help the trade weigh up the opportunities and face the challenges to come.

And for our country reports, this week we turned to two regions which are making headway in their own segments of the market: Sicily for individuality and Chile for wines that challenge the status quo.

People and Opinion:
Columnist Jerry Lockspesier turned to Adrian Chiles’ documentary ‘Drinkers like Me’ for inspiration this week.

“That expression ‘drink responsibly’ is so boring,” Chiles points out, and isn’t the whole point of drinking to be irresponsible?

For a trade with one eye on business growth and the other on mounting moralistic and health-related threats, this is a time for clear thinking and fact facing, argued Lockspieser.

And we heard from Guy Woodward, the recently crowned winner of the International Wine Columnist gong at the prestigious Louis Roederer International Wine Awards for his regular column in Harpers.

For his first column since nabbing the award over frenemy Tim Atkin MW, Woodward takes the trade to task – in usual no-nonsense approach – for not making more of wine’s collegiality.