Creating WineThe Emergence of a World Industry, 1840-1914

Creating WineThe Emergence of a World Industry, 1840-1914

James Simpson

Print publication date: 2017

ISBN: 9780691136035

Publisher: Princeton University Press

Abstract

Today's wine industry is characterized by regional differences not only in the wines themselves but also in the business models by which these wines are produced, marketed, and distributed. In Old World countries such as France, Spain, and Italy, small family vineyards and cooperative wineries abound. In New World regions like the United States and Australia, the industry is dominated by a handful of very large producers. This is the first book to trace the economic and historical forces that gave rise to very distinctive regional approaches to creating wine. The book shows how the wine industry was transformed in the decades leading up to the First World War. Population growth, rising wages, and the railways all contributed to soaring European consumption even as many vineyards were decimated by the vine disease phylloxera. At the same time, new technologies led to a major shift in production away from Europe's traditional winemaking regions. Small family producers in Europe developed institutions such as regional appellations and cooperatives to protect their commercial interests as large integrated companies built new markets in America and elsewhere. The book examines how Old and New World producers employed diverging strategies to adapt to the changing global wine industry. The book includes chapters on Europe's cheap commodity wine industry; the markets for sherry, port, claret, and champagne; and the new wine industries in California, Australia, and Argentina.