An American Perspective on ProWein

On the Lookout for the Next Big Thing?

An American Perspective on ProWeinWouldn’t it be nice to be able to look over the horizon and get an advance look at what the industry’s “Next Big Thing” might be? Prosecco. Moscato. Fruit-flavored wines. Crossover blends of spirits and wines. Australian Shiraz and Argentinean Malbec. There is one thing they all had in common—they were on display at ProWein before bursting onto the scene as the “Next Big Thing.”

Indeed, a wealth of product, packaging and other innovations are out there to be discovered and U.S. industry folks are finding more of them at ProWein, International Trade Fair Wines and Spirits, which will take place in Dusseldorf, Germany Mar. 23-25, 2014.

“I’m always looking for new items that we can be the first ones to bring in, and that allow us to differentiate ourselves from other retailers with products no one else in our territory has. Last year, we found five new products at ProWein that we’re having imported,” said Elizabeth Cooper Corporate Buyer for Southern Season, a large gourmet retailer with stores in South and North Carolina.

“From the perspective of a U.S. importer, I really need to know the full scope of what products are out there, what trends are happening not just at home, but in other countries, where many of the innovations in the industry are occurring,” said Chuck Andrade, President of Prestige Wine and Spirits Group. “ProWein is the only trade fair in the world where you can see the full presentation of what’s on offer across the globe.”

With such a wide variety of new products to explore, navigating through thousands of opportunities requires advance planning in order to maximize the number of innovators to meet with. ProWein’s website offers a great tool that allows visitors to customize their trip and set up appointments online. “The show is huge, but the website has tools that allow you to maximize the efficiency of your time there. I can sort by hall, country, producer, and then set up appointments and create a schedule that’s fully customized for me,” says Peter Baedeker, President of Curious Cork Wine Importers

It’s not just innovative wines and spirits that are on display. The New York Wine and Grape Foundation is a regional trade promotion group, and its President, Jim Tresize commented, “The real value to us and our members is the scope of the show in terms of both exhibitors and attendees. It’s great for our members to get in front of so many people, but also for us in that we get some very valuable marketing insights by seeing what other promotional associations are doing.”

The bottom line according to Baedeker is that, “those who attend on the supply side are very serious about the U.S. market, understanding it, and learning how to grow their presence in America. The fair is all about business, and while there are opportunities for socializing, the focus is in finding new business partners and improving relationships with those you may already have.”

Andrade of Prestige Wine and Spirits conclude, “There are more wines and spirits displayed in one place at one time than you can find anywhere else in the world.”

Now is the time to prepare for a visit of ProWein 2014. The online ticket shop is open and entrance passes can be purchased at a reduced rate.

For further information about visiting ProWein 2014, Visit their web site, Subscribe to their blog, and follow them on Twitter.