Victoria has 22 distinct wine regions, each with differing varietals and wine styles. While this diversity is seen a great strength for the state, it has also been a challenge to market from a tourism perspective.
Narrowing the message about Victorian wine will sharpen the focus on our competitive advantages and enable Victoria to greatly enhance the appeal to both domestic and international wine tourists, who may be overwhelmed by the breadth of choice.
What are the five pillars?
The five proposed wine tourism pillars will aim to bring together premium food and wine experiences with other factors that have great appeal to the Chinese and US markets, namely coastal attractions and clean green natural beauty.
The five pillars are:
- Pinot Coast: including the Geelong, Gippsland and Mornington Peninsula regions
- King Valley Prosecco Road: focusing on the King Valley region
- Rutherglen Fortified Resurgence: focusing on the Rutherglen region
- Yarra Valley Culinary Destination: focusing on the Yarra Valley region
- Central Region: including the Bendigo, Heathcote, Grampians and Pyrenees regions
What will happen to develop these pillars?
To develop these pillars the following activities will happen:
- Research: will be undertaken to understand the various segments' understanding of and interest in the various regions and wine varietals within the Chinese and US markets
- Consultation: we will work with the regions and tourism stakeholders to understand the types of suitable products available and any gaps in the market that will attract these visitors to the region
- Planning: a plan will be developed to attract these visitors to the region
- Activate: marketing platforms, materials and products will be developed to attract these visitors to the regions.
Who is funding the project?
The funding for the project has been gained through the following parties:
- Australian Government
- Victorian Government
- Wine Victoria
- Pinot Coast regions: Geelong, Gippsland and Mornington Peninsula
- King Valley region
- Rutherglen region
- Yarra Valley region
- Central Region: Bendigo, Heathcote, Grampians and Pyrenees regions
Project Control Board
The Project Control Board (PCB) has approved the appointment of the project management resources and the development of the Expressions of Interest for Brand Consultants for the project. The PCB members are:
- Eliza Brown - Wine Victoria;
- Chris Gillard - Fortified Resurgence;
- Dean-Cleave Smith - Prosecco Road;
- Shae Keenan - Visit Victoria;
- Liz Hamilton - Food and Wine Victoria;
- Damien Sheehan - Central;
- Mike Symons - Pinot Coast;
- Caroline Evans - Yarra Valley;
- Chris White - Visit Victoria;
- Amanda Ellery - DEDJTR; and
- Richard Howden - Wine Victoria.
What will happen next?
Wine Victoria has negotiated the funding contracts with the Australian and Victorian Governments and a governance structure has been set up to deliver the project.
The Expressions of Interest process to select the brand consultants for each of the five pillars has now closed and successful agencies Redhanded and iSpy have been appointed to the pillars. Redhanded will develop the Fortified Resurgence, Prosecco Road and Yarra Valley Culinary Destination Plan pillars, while iSpy will be responsible for the Central and Pinot Coast pillars.
The project is progressing at a rapid rate and is nearing the end of the brand development phase. After extensive research and industry consultation, the brand agencies are pulling all the insights together to come up with a brand position for each Pillar, which will be presented to the Working Groups over the coming weeks.
The next phase of the project will be exciting, as the brands will start to be used in both the domestic and international tourism markets.
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