Wine tourism: Making trips through vineyards more sustainable

“Oenotourism” or “Eno-tourism” are popular terms in the wine sector. Both refer to tourism that provides authentic tourism experiences for customers visiting vineyards/wineries as well as tasting, consuming and/or purchasing wine.

A visit to cellars, various sips during tasting while diving deeper into the world of viticulture… For decades, wine tourism has been an important part of the wine industry. It contributes to the economic development of a wine region while preserving and enhancing its cultural heritage. Wine tourism could therefore be an essential element in ensuring the long-term viability of wine regions around the world.

“Oenotourism” or “Eno-tourism” are popular terms in the wine sector. Both refer to tourism that provides authentic tourism experiences for customers visiting vineyards/wineries as well as tasting, consuming and/or purchasing wine. It also gives the opportunity to discover untold stories of vineyards, resources used and processes, while allowing travelers to immerse themselves in the historical journey, culture, heritage values ​​and culinary diversity of wine.

Wine connoisseurs now have the opportunity to peek into the once enigmatic world of wine, making the wine experience more visual and enjoyable for them.

Can sustainability be integrated into luxury?

Consumers today are more aware and concerned about the negative impacts the products they buy leave on our climate and our environment – ​​even for luxury items like wine. They want to know the activities involved in creating the product and whether the process is environmentally friendly and socially equitable.

Efforts in winemaking, use of resources, engagement with the local community, preservation of local culture and traditions and promotion of these to tourists have all become increasingly important in recent years. years. Therefore, it is essential not only that wineries follow sustainable winemaking practices, but it becomes extremely relevant to integrate the wine tourism experience with the presentation of effective sustainable practices to tap into the psyche of the modern consumer.

If properly planned and managed, wine tourism can provide an opportunity for growth in the wine value chain. This creates more value and brings immense benefit to operators and visitors. The presence of wine tourists is a guarantee of sustenance for the community and other local businesses.

The canvas of the challenge

Wine tourism, like any other industry, also faces several challenges. The challenges are multiple and encompass environmental, socio-economic and climatic factors. This is also accompanied by a lack of financial and human resources, infrastructure, information/guidelines, strategy, knowledge, movement of collaborators, commitment, commitment and interest from the top. leadership, to name a few.

According to a recent survey by WineTourism.com and Hochschule Geisenheim
University, sustainability plays a vital role for wineries. A whopping 93% of all wineries that took part in the survey said that sustainability in wine tourism is either important or very important.

The results of the survey also revealed that the main obstacles to achieving sustainability parameters in wine tourism are the lack of financial resources (48%), human resources (35%), infrastructure (35%) , and information/guidance (18%). among other factors. All of these must be taken into account for sustainability to take center stage.

To prioritize them, raising awareness is not enough when it comes to adopting sustainable wine tourism activities. A need for focused effort and execution to meet exact requirements is the call of the hour. Due to a lack of knowledge, guidelines and procedural documentation, wine tourism operations are less successful with limited results. To thrive at a steady pace, a thorough understanding of sustainable standards and practices is essential and must go hand-in-hand with training all important stakeholders.

Towards more sustainable and safer wine tourism companies

Tourism is one of the fastest growing sectors in the world, as well as a key source of foreign currency and jobs, according to the United Nations. It is closely linked to the social, economic and environmental well-being of many countries, especially developing countries.

Undoubtedly, the tourism industry contributes significantly to employment and local wealth, strengthens local communities, preserves local cultures and helps conserve heritage, including architecture and natural sites. These are only achievable when tourist sites are managed responsibly.

Because it can be difficult for businesses to start and refine their sustainability journey, Preferred by Nature has developed the Standard for Sustainable Travel Activities. The standard helps businesses and travel operations manage their systems more responsibly while delivering on their promises to protect and preserve biodiversity, cultural heritage and the well-being of local communities.

The standard includes four principles – designed to help companies focus on improving their performance in business management and operations, environmental, socio-cultural and climate practices.

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