AN INTERVIEW WITH THE DIRECTOR GENERAL OF OIV PAU ROCA BLASCO

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Tempo di lettura 3 min

by Enrico Zamboni

How is the development of the OIV 2020/2024 strategic plan progressing?
The 2020-2024 Strategic Plan, approved during the Extraordinary General Assembly of the OIV on 19 October 2019, has just been released and will be implemented during the current year. Its strategic objectives are motivated by the various challenges the international wine sector currently faces. The work of the Organization, is also included in the 2030 forecast of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), developed with the guidance of the United Nations. The plan is structured around six axes, each of which sets out specific objectives. Three of these axes refer to environmental, social and economic sustainability. The other three axes are more instrumental: development of the OIV guidelines, digitalization and the relationship and renewed approach of the OIV with various international organizations such as FAO, Codex programmes, the UN and others.

Among the projects sponsored by the OIV is that of “World Wine Women”, an adventure led by four university students who have decided to undertake a six-month world wine tour that took them to seven countries and fifty-seven wineries. Why did the OIV believe in this project and played an active part in planning it?
In January 2019, the OIV hosted representatives from the “World Wine Women” project. As mentioned above it is a project led by women which involves touring the world’s vineyards, in order to learn more about the environment and understand the role of women in this traditionally male sector. The project reflects the OIV’s desire to promote the role of women in the world of wine and, in order to give it support and visibility, it has been given prominence on our website. It must be specified that it was not sponsored in the terms of our international rules. Indeed, the OIV only grants patronage to meetings of a scientific and technical nature, as well as international wine and spirits competitions.

A Good mood, organization, an adventurous spirit and a great deal of curiosity. These are the strong points of the four girls involved in the project. How do you think these characteristics can be useful in enhancing the role of women in the world of wine?
As outlined in the Strategic Plan, the OIV seeks to “contribute to the social development and reduction of inequality in the vitivinicultural sector by implementing systems to identify, measure and tackle gender inequality in this sector”. The presence of women in the wine sector has increased. Take the OIV’s organigram for example: Regina Vanderlinde is the third woman president to be elected in a row! And, in fact, an adventurous spirit is fundamental in order to face the future with optimism. The strength and capacity of Alexandra Dubar, Alice Bergeras, Atalante Ramé and Louise Douvry to organise this project is a very optimistic sign.

Sticking to the topic of “pink”, the OIV, in recent years, has been sponsoring “Le Mondial du Rosé”, the International Rosé World Competition. There is a positive trend of global consumption of rosé wines which has remained constant for over 15 years. How do you see the development of this category of wine in the near future?
“Rosé” is a category of wine that, together with sparkling wine, has captured the attention of many analysts of the sector in recent years. The OIV itself studied this specific market in 2015 when we published a report ad hoc. The interest in the rosé market lies in fact in the positive trend in consumption, with about 24 million hectoliters consumed globally in 2019 (compared to the 22 million hectoliters in 2009 and 18 million hectoliters in 1999). An even more interesting fact is that its market potential has not yet been fully recognized in many countries, especially in the Americas as well as in Asia, where the demand for rosé wine is rapidly growing. The Conseil Interprofessionnel des Vins de Provence (CIVP) recently forecast a global consumption of rosé wine of 30 million hectoliters by the year 2035.

The themes of the “World Wine Women” and rosé wines are also considered of great importance by FISAR which, since 2011, has been undertaking the project “Fisar in Rosa”, with the aim of encouraging the involvement of women in the winemaking and catering sectors, with a view to promote equal opportunities. What role could the sommelier play in this awareness-raising process?
Sommeliers are a very important link between the product and the consumer. This is the reason why in 2014 the OIV’s members states adopted the international definition of “Sommelier” and has recommended the establishment of training programmes for sommeliers. In fact, consumers may feel uneasy and uncertain when faced with the enormous range of varieties offered by wine. Women working as sommeliers are crucial in providing advice and promoting confidence.

Il Sommelier Magazine AN INTERVIEW WITH THE DIRECTOR GENERAL OF OIV PAU ROCA BLASCO

Who is Pau Roca Blasco?

President of the Commission for the Reform of the CMO (European Committee of Wineries, CEEV), Member of the Governing Council of ECOVIDRIO, Member of the permanent groups “Wine” and “PAC” of the European Commission, Vice-President of the Internationalization Committee of the Spanish Federation of the Food and Beverage Industries (FIAB), Member of the International Committee of the Confederación Española de Organizaciones Empresariales (CEOE). In 2019 he became General Manager of the OIV after holding the roles of Vice President of the group of experts for “Sustainable Development and Climate Change” (ENVIRO) and President of the group of experts “Consumer Law and Information” (DROCON).

What is the OIV?

The International Organisation of Vine and Wine (OIV) defines itself as an intergovernmental body of a scientific and technical nature, with recognized competence in the field of vine, wine, wine-based drinks, table grapes, raisins and other vine products. It came into being on 3 April 2001 replacing the International Office of Vine and Wine, created in 1958, which in turn originated from the International Wine Office created on 29 November 1924. The Agreement was signed by 35 sovereign states and came into force on 1 January 2004. To date, the OIV is composed of 47 Member States to which should be added the Observatories, represented by the European Union, China (City of Yantai Prefecture and the Autonomous Region of Ningxia Hui) and the various Associations and Federations of the sector.

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