Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Copyright © 2011, Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Article Type: Editorial From: International Journal of Wine Business Research, Volume 23, Issue 4
Welcome to this year’s last issue which holds another five papers deserving your full attention. Before getting into the specifics, though, let me briefly revisit the 6th International Conference of the Academy of Wine Business Research which took place 9-12 June in Bordeaux, France. Hosted and most competently organized by faculty and staff of Bordeaux Business School BEM, the conference showcased current research from around the world with a special emphasis on “The faces of wine sustainability”. About 83 presentations in 22 sessions shed light on issues of interest, and three renowned keynote speakers shared their views with an attentive audience including a significant number of practitioners. Further highlights included most educational technical tours to wineries in the greater Bordeaux area and culinary delicacies at the various receptions and conference dinners. Expect an IJWBR special issue in the second quarter of 2012 featuring five of the conference’s best papers. The 7th AWBR Conference is planned to be held in the Southern hemisphere in February 2013.
Seamlessly continuing the conference theme, the first paper in this issue by Canadian researchers Naomi Berghoef and Rachel Dodds investigates consumer acceptance and willingness-to-pay for eco-labeled wine in Ontario. Many industries around the world have started to view sustainability as one way to better differentiate and position their wines relative to competing offerings (or to fulfill an environmentally responsible lifestyle), hereby raising the question if consumers recognize and value the underlying effort. Given that consumer demand for sustainably produced wine still remains largely unclear, Dodd’s and Berghoef’s findings should benefit other regions beyond Ontario in that the study not only estimates demand and provides managerial guidelines on eco-labeling and – pricing, but in that the methodology employed can serve as a role model for other constituencies interested in tackling those issues.
A more (or maybe less) typical perspective on wine labels provides the second article by Bordeaux University-based researchers Franck Celhay and Juliette Passebois. Probably one of the most striking differences between wines from the “Old” and “New” Worlds is that the former predominantly feature classic labels whereas the latter often bear highly irreverent and atypical labels. Acknowledging that the aesthetics of a label may sway consumers, Celhay and Passebois examine how a design’s typicality influences purchase intentions by providing aesthetic value. They complement this perspective on persuasion by accounting for the perceived risk consumers associate with a consumption occasion, and provide guidelines on how to balance the need for differentiation against undesirable effects of atypicality.
Globalization manifests itself in the wine business through an increased mobility of human resources, among others, as evident in French entrepreneurs acquiring wineries in Chile, French enologists making Oregon wines or American winemakers working in France. In their pioneering paper, Natalie Spielmann and Barry Babin extend research on origin effects to show that consumers not only respond differently to where a wine is made (the place) but also to where the creator comes from (the who). The level of congruence between both not only influences judgments of wine authenticity and quality but additionally leads consumers to estimate divergent prices. Introduction of consumer dogmatism as a previously under-researched but potentially powerful individual difference makes the article even more intriguing.
Denmark’s prestigious business school in Aarhus hosts the authors of the fourth paper: Valdemar Smith and Jan Bentzen. Largely unknown to the greater wine producing community, Denmark has established a small wine industry, producing mostly red and a few white varietals, all carefully selected for the cooler climate. While the overview on the Danish wine industry makes for an interesting read alone, the paper’s more valuable contribution arguably lies with an econometric model estimating determinants of wine quality using award information from the Danish Wine Contest as the dependent variable and various producer, site, and grape characteristics as independent variables.
A region with a much warmer climate, centered around Jerez in Spain, is the focus of this issue’s final paper co-authored by a mixed Cadiz-Cordoba group of researchers. Like many other place-based products, Sherry contributes to attracting visitors to the region. However, like other regions, stakeholders in the Cadiz (and one Sevilla) destinations struggle to understand what type of visitors the wine attracts, the nature of their visit, and obstacles to a more efficient development of wine tourism. Based on a survey of professionals, the authors detail the local wine tourism industry, and develop recommendations for future prosperity.
Before concluding this editorial, I would like to alert readers to an upcoming opportunity to present their work to an appreciative and educated audience: The Academy of Marketing Science (not to be confused with the much smaller Academy of Wine Business Research mentioned above) will hold its 16th World Marketing Congress 17-20 July 2013 in Melbourne, Australia. Among others, the “tourism, arts, heritage and wine marketing track” should provide an excellent opportunity to get high visibility for your best work. The track will be co-chaired by Professor Sandra Gountas (Curtin University) and myself. I look forward to receive your submissions to IJWBR as well as to the conference.
Ulrich R. Orth