Cork stoppers may taint as many as one in 33 bottles of all domestic US wines. Yet, because tradition is thought to play such an important role in shaping expectations regarding acceptable premium wine packaging, marketers have felt little need to test whether cork closures are indeed a critical consumer expectation. This paper serves as a guide toward understanding the obstacles which must first be overcome by those producers who wish to adopt cork substitutes for fine wines. This paper also offers insight into grappling with the implementation of problem solutions; shows why desirable solutions may not always be practical; and provides insight into why conflicting intrafirm departmental viewpoints, consumer expectations, and the competitive environment in which the firm or industry operates, can combine to lead the marketer to reject money‐saving superior product innovations. Preliminary work indicates that consumers reject label message conditions as a means of achieving acceptance of cork alternatives. The main objective of future research should therefore be to provide specific findings on how much positive and negative impact is likely to occur by changing the product design.
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