The International Wine Tourism Conference (IWINETC) for 2016 is rapidly approaching and set to be the highlight of the year for key players in the wine and gastronomy industry. This annual event is being held in the Barcelona province, Catalunya and offers wine tourism professionals globally a unique opportunity to network and exchange ideas. The two day (5 & 6 April) official conference program for 2016 has now been finalised which gives attendees a brief taste of what to expect from the exciting event which hosts about 30 different talks, workshops and symposiums. There is also a resource exhibition area, various social events and the additional Wine Tourism Workshop, making it a conference that is not to be missed by those who are serious about the sector.
IWINETC kicks off on the 4 April by giving participants a chance to visit to one out of four of the best Cava producers of 2016 as stated in the recently published “50 Great Cavas 2016” by Wine Pleasures. This is followed by a Welcome Reception which features addresses from Mr Xavier Espassa Añoveros, General Manager of the ‘Catalan Tourist Board’, and Mr Miquel Forns i Fusté of the ‘ Barcelona Province Council Tourist Boardl’ plus a memorable tasting experience of local tapas matched with Cavas and wines sponsored by Codorníu.
But the real ‘substance’ of the conference begins on the 5 April with a full day of talks, masterclasses and the opening of the exhibition area. The talks themselves are held over two days, span across five categories and are offered in simultaneous translation; from English to Spanish and vice versa. Attendees will have the hard pressed task of trying to choose which sessions to attend as there are at least three different talks offered during each of the scheduled times.
A sample of the kind of talks that you can expect under each category include:
- Professional Development: ‘SEO Masterclass for the Wine Tourism Industry’ – by Judith ‘deCabbit’ Lewis, founder of deCabbit Consultancy
- Research: ‘Key Factors of Wine Tourism In Catalonia’ – by Damià Serrano, from Barcelona University;
- Branding and Marketing: “El Enoturismo y la Colaboración Público-Privada” – by Carme Ribas, from RECEVIN
- Grape Escape Destinations: “Wine Tourism In Bulgaria: Where History Meets The Future”- by Zina Sorensen
But participants are likely to be most looking forward to the Networking talks which are headlined by Sarah Jane Evans, Chairman of the Institute of the Masters of Wine, who will be facilitating the highly anticipated ‘Official IWINETC Grand Cava Tasting’ featureing Cavas from Gramona, Llopart, Codorníu, Freixenet, Castellroig and Vallformosa.
Both conference days also include active social and gastronomy events such as the guided visits to the IWINETC´s Gold Sponsors, Freixenet and Torres . The visits will be followed by exclusive Gala dinners at each location created by culinary experts and matched with wines and Cavas.
There will be plenty of information sharing as the conference will host a resources exhibition which will involve around 20 wine and tourism exhibitors. Participants will have the opportunity to discover new international grape escape destinations, taste different products and enter various competitions and raffles.
But the experience does not end after the formalities of the IWINETC conclude as post conference, there is a one day Wine Tourism Workshop on offer. This full day workshop enables tour operators and travel agents, specialised in wine and culinary tourism, the chance to connect and engage with wine tourism experience providers from countries as diverse as Georgia, Greece, France, Italy, Portugal and Spain. This workshop has a main focus on bringing in key buyers and new business opportunities and will involve a diverse range of key professionals. Wine Tourism Experience providers include the likes of Turisme El Baix Llobregat, Movimento Turismo del Vino Puglia, enoturismePENEDÈS, Bodega Otazu , & Tenuta di Artimino.
If conference attendees prefer an outdoor experience, they also have the option of attending two different Post Conference Wine Tasting Tours to Conca de Barberà & Tarragona or Cava & Penedès >>, scheduled for the 7 and 8 April.
With Premium Sponsors like the Catalan Tourist Board and the Barcelona Province Tourist Board supporting the event, the International Wine and Tourism Conference 2016 will be an experience that caters for both professionals operating in the sector as well as individuals who are eager to learn more about wine. The IWINETC is quickly approaching and tickets are still available for online purchase.
The 8th edition of the International Wine Tourism Conference, Exhibition and Workshop coincides with Catalonia being named as the European Region of Gastronomy 2016