XXXVIth World Congress of Vine and Wine: Vine and wine between tradition and modernity
11th General Assembly of the International Organisation of Vine and Wine (OIV)
The International Organisation of Vine and Wine (OIV) fosters an environment that is conducive to scientific and technical innovation, the dissemination of the results thereof and the development of the international viti-vini-cultural sector. It will promote, through its recommendations, international standards and guidelines, harmonisation and the sharing of information, and sound science-based knowledge, in order to enhance productivity, product safety and quality and the conditions for producing and marketing vine and wine products.
45 years after the last Congress held in Bucharest in 1968, it is a great opportunity to accept the invitation of the Romanian Ministry of Agriculture in order to get together during this important annual meeting of the world of vine and wine. Romania is a country with excellent climatic and geographic qualities, key factors for the production of high quality wines. This represents a great challenge and transformations focused on competition in the wine market worldwide. Claudia Ines Quini, OIV President
Romania is a member of the International Office for Vine and Wine since 1927 and later, it became a member of the International Organisation of Vine and Wine. The theme of the Congress – “Vine and wine between tradition and modernity” – will open the debates on many of the areas of interest for the sectors involved in contemporary viticulture and oenology, with an accent on preserving the traditions of all regions of the globe. Daniel Constantin, Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development
Romania, sometimes presented as the Old Country of New Wines, is the right place for this exceptionally large-scale event which will gather the scientific elite in the field, offering scientists from all over the world the possibility to share knowledge and experiences while wine producers can exhibit the full range of their products for domestic and foreign consumers. Viticulture, Oenology, Economy and Law, and Safety and Health, related to sustainability, biodiversity, and innovations and technology – are just of few of the topics, to be debated during the congress.
The OIV Congresses always give participants the possibility of analyzing a number of specific, traditional aspects from the vine and wine sector of the host country. More than that, the 36th edition of the World Congress of Vine and Wine will be an excellent opportunity for scientists to disseminate their new initiatives in the field and engage in a fruitful exchange of views on various relevant topics. For the Romanian participants this will be an opportunity to promote their country’s values, both scientific and socio-cultural, and prove to the world how fully appropriate the nickname Old country of new wines actually is.
The Congress theme – “Vine and Wine between Tradition and Modernity” was purposely chosen to allow for scientific answers to be given to the new vine cultivation technologies and innovative processes in wine-making, often disputed by the so-called “traditionalists”, while also pointing out that in this part of Europe vine and wine culture has been a millenary occupation. Little is known that the Greek god of vine and wine, one of the most important (and publicized) deities of ancient times, is of Thracian origin, as are the people who live in Romania today. Thus, when the Greek settlers landed in the VII-VI century BC on the western shores of Pontus Euxinus, establishing large urban settlements such as Histria (Istria), Tomis (Constanta), Callatis (Mangalia), they found here a thriving vine and wine culture as well as a god presiding over it – Sabazios – whom they hastened to syncretise into the god they were to spread all over the world, Dionysus.
Dacian Cioloş, Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development, was also present at the event and recommended “moderation” when it comes to drinking “good” wine, even if in some European areas the concept of moderation has different connotations.
“Good wine must maintain its reputation, respond to the taste of consumers, find new markets and, of course, it should be consumed in moderation. But as a European Commissioner I would not dare to define this concept of moderation at European level, because tastes vary from one area to another”, declared Cioloş.
According to Dacian Cioloş, the wine sector is “strategic”. And it is perhaps because the EU is the largest producer, exporter and importer of wines in the world. Both tradition and modernity meet in the European production, which is why, in Commissioner Cioloş’s opinion, the strategy of the European Union is to introduce elements of modernity, without affecting the tradition.
“For the EU, the wine sector is strategic. It is enough (…) to say that Europe is (…) the largest producer, exporter and importer of wines in the world, (…) therefore a dynamic market in terms of production and trade. (…) The EU has the widest diversity of wines produced in more than half of the soon to be 28 member states, quality wines related to traditions and specific regions. (…) For this reason, we need to be able to introduce elements of modernity, without affecting this foundation created by the trust of consumers. (…) A modern, innovative, environment-friendly and competitive viticulture can also be achieved by maintaining and harnessing the elements of tradition. (…) As far as I am concerned, rediscovering tradition means developing on the example of the past, on the history, it means the “flavor” that makes wines different from one another, it means placing value on the link between the authenticity of a wine and the earth, the region in which it was cultivated”, highlighted Dacian Cioloş.