Vino: The Road Ahead

Three weeks ago, a swath of the Italian wine business assembled in Verona to take stock of the state of vino and exchange ideas about the future.

At the third-annual edition of Vinitaly International's Wine2Wine business forum, some 1,600 participants—wine producers, marketing and sales professionals, importers and others—conferred on topics ranging from the latest in viticulture techniques to digital trends and what brain science tells us about consumers in the new frontier of "neuromarketing."

Because this is Italy—a country where individualism is an art form—there is rarely what you'd call "consensus," especially when it comes to Italy's complicated and often wacky rules for wines bearing one of its more than 500 DOC, DOCG and IGT designations.

But the two subjects ever-present on the minds of Italians in the trade are the world's two biggest economies. First is the United States, which is Italy's largest export market for wine and which imports more wine from Italy than from anywhere else. A close second is China, seen as the future El Dorado for stylish European the full blog (free) at