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Nyetimber and Plumpton join forces to develop winemakers of the future

Published:  09 March, 2020

Nyetimber is looking to help develop the next generation of wine industry leaders via a new placement scheme in conjunction with Plumpton College’s wine division.

Three students from the Sussex agricultural college are being invited to spend 10 days at the West Chiltington winery where they will get hands-on practical experience in the business of making and selling wine.

Students will work with a winemaking team headed up by chief winemaker Cherie Spriggs.

As well as working in the winery, they will also get experience in sales and marketing – areas seen as key for developing future winemaking talent.

“With the increasing demand for quality English Sparkling Wine, there is a commensurate need for the industry to recruit more talent from the growing number of students learning about wine,” Nyetimber owner and CEO, Eric Heerema said.

“We at Nyetimber are delighted to offer work experience to students from Plumpton as we appreciate the importance of discovering young professionals with an aptitude for wine, offering mentoring, training and hands-on experience to develop those who want to pursue a career in what is a fascinating, exciting and rewarding industry.”

Founded by Chris Foss back in 1988, Plumpton’s Wine Centre has since grown to offer a range of courses aimed at school leavers through to masters degree level, thus helping to support the UK’s rapidly expanding wine industry.

Today, around 2,500 people work in wine production in the UK and this is expected to increase to 30,000 by 2040 (WineGB).

Total global sales of English and Welsh wine are also expected to leap over the next two decades, hitting 40 million bottles – the equivalent of £1 billion in sales – by 2040.

Just under 6 million bottles were sold in 2018.

Vine plantings are also on the up across England and Wales. Three million vines were planted in 2019 – triple that of 2017.

Total wine production meanwhile hit a record 13.2 million bottles in 2018, up 123% on the prior year – approximately two-thirds of which was sparkling.