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WSTA Industry Summit 2020

»Date: 15th September 2020, 11:00 am - 17th September 2020, 4:30 pm

»Venue: Digital Conference

»Open to: Trade and press, non-members welcome

»Who should attend: Everyone! This is a “big-picture-thinking” event where topics and discussion will provide insights into the future of the industry and aims to spur fresh ideas for our audience members


Sponsored by

Beyond the Foreseeable

 

For the this year’s digital programme, including the full speaker line-up and session information, please click here

 

An opportunity for businesses to come together to discuss key industry topics and find the “blue-sky-thinking” space they need!

 

Since the start of the Coronavirus pandemic, we’ve been uncertain if we would be able to return to the British Library to host the WSTA Industry Summit this year. With the health and wellbeing of our attendees of utmost concern, we took the decision in June not to return to the British Library and instead to host the full programme virtually!

But moving to a virtual platform is not the only change this year. Hosting this year’s Industry Summit virtually as a series of smaller events provided a fantastic opportunity for the WSTA to develop an agenda that caters for a broader range of Industry businesses and their interests.

 

We’ve also switched up the ticketing structure with an unburdensome, straightforward one-size-fits-all approach…

 

One ticket at £50+vat per member company

Or, one ticket at £150+vat per non-member company

= Unlimited number of attendees per company

 

This year’s speakers include:

Rooney Anand

Senior Independent Director of Morrisons plc, Chairman of private equity backed businesses Away Resorts and Purity Soft Drinks,  former CEO of Greene King.

Joy Spence

Master Blender, Appleton Estate

Lord (Chris) Holmes of Richmond MBE

Former Paralympian, co-chair of Parliamentary Groups on Assistive Technology, Fintech, Blockchain and the 4th Industrial Revolution

Alex Depledge MBE

Founder & CEO, Resi

 

Haven’t been to a WSTA Industry Summit before?

 

Obviously, this year will be different to previous years but if you haven’t yet attended a WSTA Industry Summit, this video from 2019 will help set the tone…

 

Not registered? Hit the ‘BuyTickets’ button above!

1. Check if your company already has an InSum ticket using the list under the “Companies Attending” tab.

2. If your company is not listed, purchase the WSTA member or non-member ticket through the booking link above.

3. Once the transaction is complete, you will receive two emails – an Eventbrite confirmation, including a tax invoice; and an email from jessica@wsta.co.uk containing registration information and template email.

4. Forward the registration email and information to all your employees, who will then able to access the Session booking page and register for each session.

5. Employees must register using a company email address for authentication purposes.

6. We will be releasing more details about each session and speakers over the next few weeks. Employees can manage their booking and register/ unregister from sessions via their unique registration link from Eventbrite.

11am, Tuesday 15 September

More details to be released soon!

Speakers

Miles Beale, WSTA CEO

The Cabinet Office has recently announced it is holding a consultation that seeks the views and expertise of stakeholders to help develop the 2025 UK Border Strategy, with the outcome being to create and deliver a world class border by 2025.

Great! I hear you shout - this would be a big step up from the multiple keying of data, incompatible systems and physical hardcopies that are required throughout the supply chain we have today.

But could a fully digitised and streamlined border create additional opportunities for businesses across the whole supply chain?

We are delighted to announce Lord Chris Holmes MBE, Russell Davies, MD of Hillebrand, and Jack Merrylees, Head of Comms & PR at Majestic, will join WSTA CEO, Miles Beale to discuss the possible advantages and opportunities of adopting new technology, such as blockchain, to streamline the whole supply chain, from producer through wholesalers to retailer to consumer. With "farm to fork" style traceability becoming increasingly important to consumers, what technologies are already in the pipeline, and shouldn’t we become early adopters to help future-proof our industry?

Speakers

Miles Beale (Chair), with panellists:

Russell Davies, Managing Director, Hillebrand;

Lord Holmes of Richmond MBE

Jack Merrylees, Head of Communications & PR, Majestic

11am, Wednesday 16 September

We are delighted to announce that Rooney Anand, former CEO of brewer and pub company Greene King is this year’s Keynote Interviewee.

Rooney Anand is Chairman of private equity backed businesses Away Resorts and Purity Soft Drinks. He also serves as Senior Independent Director for Wm Morrison Supermarkets plc, and is Chairman of WorldSkills UK, the skills and apprenticeship Government backed charitable foundation. Prior to this, Rooney was a director at Greene King plc from August 2001 to May 2019. Initially, Managing Director of the brewing division, he was appointed Chief Executive in May 2005 and stepped down in May 2019. During his tenure as CEO at Greene King the enterprise value of the business grew threefold to just under £5bn and the market capitalisation grew fourfold to £2.7bn; the business was transformed from a regional pub brewer to the UK’s leading pub company. Before joining Greene King, Rooney built a career in the food industry at Sara Lee Bakery UK (the bakery subsidiary of the US owned Sara Lee Corporation) and prior to that, with United Biscuits Plc.

Rooney has an MBA from Aston Business School, where he majored in Corporate Finance and a BSc in Construction Management from Bristol Polytechnic. He is an Honorary Professor at Aston Business School and was awarded an Honorary Doctorate by Aston University in July 2016. He was named the Lloyds ‘UK Business Leader of the Year 2016. Rooney lives in Cambridge.

Speakers

Alex Forrest Whiting (Chair), interviewing:

Rooney Anand, Chair, Away Resorts & Purity Drinks, former CEO, Greene King

We are delighted to announce that Joy Spence, Master Blender at Appleton Estate, will be joining this year’s Industry Summit, as part of our new Sofa Session.

The session will take on an informal interview style where we will look to discuss Joy's life and work as Master Blender, the Jamaican Rum GI, Appleton's new tourism centre, and key topical matters for our industry.

There can be only one woman to hold the title of “First Female Master Blender in the Spirits Industry,” and that woman is Appleton Estate’s Joy Spence. A never-tiring, unbelievably skilled and deeply passionate force of nature, Joy has served as Master Blender at Appleton Estate for nearly a quarter of a century, pouring her vast knowledge and perfectionism into every bottle of Jamaica’s most-celebrated rum Joy’s never-ceasing drive to acquire knowledge led her overseas to the University of Loughborough in London, where she was awarded a Master of Science degree. In doing so, Spence registered the highest final exams scores in the school’s lauded history (a record that still holds to this day).

Upon completion of her studies, Joy found her way back to Jamaica, landing a post in 1981 as the Chief Chemist for J. Wray & Nephew Ltd., the maker of Appleton Rum. With Master Blender Owen Tulloch’s retirement in 1997, Joy became Master Blender. During the last 23 years, Joy has created some of the finest, most highly awarded rums the world has ever seen, including Appleton Estate 8 Year Old Reserve and Appleton Estate Rare Blend 12 Year Old.

Joy’s hard work and dedication, not only to Appleton Estate, but to the country of Jamaica and the global rum industry, earned her one of the highest Jamaican civilian commendations possible in 2017 – “Order of Distinction” Rank Commander – in addition to two honorary doctorate degrees, a Grand Dame Award for “Most Influential Female in the Spirits Industry” from Tales of the Cocktail, and being named one of Fortune Magazine’s “Most Influential Women in Food & Drink.” In 2018, Joy was the first female to receive the Jamaica Prime Minister Medal for Science and Technology. Joy’s amazing career is chronicled at the recently opened Joy Spence Appleton Estate Rum Experience at the Appleton Estate Distillery in St. Elizabeth Parish, Jamaica.

Speakers

Alex Forrest Whiting (Chair), interviewing:

Joy Spence, Master Blender, Appleton Estate

11am, Thursday 17 September

The WSTA Industry Summit Panel Session has always had one very important aim - to secure speakers from outside of the wine and spirit industry; speakers from industries that we might not have anything in common with. Why do we do this?

A fresh pair of eyes!

By hearing what other industries have to say - what they’re doing, learning, trying out, researching - we see things from a different perspective, with renewed objectivity. This session is all about thinking outside the box, the blue-sky-thinking that brings new ideas and fresh approaches, so that we can advance our industry through innovation, creativity and disruption.

We’re delighted to announce our three panellists that… well… in short, they’ve all taken the traditional and turned it on its head. Be ready to think outside the box!

Speakers

Alex Forrest Whiting (Chair), with panellists:

Alex Depledge MBE, Founder & CEO, Resi;

Steven Macatonia, Co-Founder, Union Hand-Roasted Coffee;

Claire Strickett, Senior Planner, adam&eveDDB.

3.30pm, Thursday 17 September

In a technologically enabled and fast-changing world, consumers are changing behaviour fast, and if we don’t catch up, we’re in trouble!

We are delighted to announce that Joe Fattorini, Expert Presenter and Wine Writer, will host the WSTA Industry Summit Finale Session, alongside two special guests – Melanie Jappy, Producer of The Wine Show, and John Moore, Finance Director of the new pioneering Wolfcraig Distillery.

Joe, Melanie and John will be talking all things technology and digital transformation, communication and storytelling for creating a business that brings producers, retailers and brand owners closer to the consumer.  

Speakers

Joe Fattorini (Chair)with special guests:

Melanie Jappy, Producer of The Wine Show and;

John Moore, Finance Director, Wolfcraig Distillery

Returning Chair: Alex Forrest Whiting

Broadcaster, Conference Host & Media Trainer, alexfw.com

Alex will be hosting sessions 3, 4, & 5

Alex Forrest Whiting has reported and presented for major broadcasters around the world. A political correspondent and presenter for many years with ITV, Alex brings authority to all her work. With a track record that includes BBC World, Al Jazeera English and now Germany’s international broadcaster, DW, she has a deep knowledge of international affairs. She is currently DW’s Brexit Analyst as well as a reporter, mentor and media trainer.

Her work as presenter for Saxo TV expanded her expertise to financial and economic news. ITV Good Morning Britain, Huffington Post, The Spectator, RTE Radio and a range of publications have also benefitted from her analysis and insight. A major part of Alex’s work is as an event host, moderator and public speaker.

Session 2 Chair & Speaker: Miles Beale

Chief Executive, WSTA

Miles joined the WSTA in 2012 from the Defra. He has overall responsibility for the Wine and Spirit Trade Association’s operations. Miles was previously Deputy Director for EU and International Agriculture Policy, including reform of the EU’s Common Agriculture Policy. He was previously Deputy Director for European and Global Issues at the Cabinet Office and spent much of his early career at the Department of Communities and Local Government.

Miles has worked across a broad range of public policy, including urban regeneration, drugs policy and social exclusion, and has been involved in significant negotiations at national and European level. He worked closely with senior Ministers in successive governments – including as private secretary to two Cabinet Ministers.

Finale Chair: Joe Fattorini

Presenter & Writer

Joe is known around the world as “Obi Wine Kenobi”, the expert presenter on The Wine Show. For the last 20 years Joe has sold wine to restaurants, hotels, bars and celebrity weddings as one of the UK’s leading wine merchants. Today Joe guides 250 million viewers in 107 countries through The Wine Show, as well as wine lovers at sea as an ambassador to Celebrity Cruises.

Joe wrote the world’s first textbook on selling and marketing wine in restaurants. A book still used in universities over 20 years later. Never shy of controversy, he once wrote the ‘most complained about article’ ever published in Decanter Magazine.

Session 2: Russell Davies

Managing Director, Hillebrand

Russell Davies is the Managing Director UK and Ireland for Hillebrand the world’s leading logistic provider for the beer, wines and spirits industry. Within the UK and Ireland Hillebrand has offices in London, Southampton, Glasgow, Dublin and Dover employing approximately 200 dedicated employees providing a range of logistics services from bulk and cased wine import, to spirits exports and customs clearance services.

Prior to Hillebrand he served as the Senior Vice President Supply Chain and Managing Director Freight Services for GKN Driveline. Here he transformed the in-house 4PL for the inbound logistics for over 40 factories worldwide creating regional control towers, supporting the supply chain operations. Russell has over 25 years of experience in supply chain, logistics and warehouse automation working across sales, commercial and general management roles.

Russell believes that sustainable results can only be achieved by building the best teams and empowering them to make decisions.

Russell is a proud father to Hannah and Thomas, and husband to Tracy who shares his passion for running and now cycling.

Session 2: Lord (Chris) Holmes MBE

Former Paralympian, co-chair of Parliamentary Groups on Assistive Technology, Fintech, Blockchain and the 4th Industrial Revolution, ChrisHolmes.co.uk

Chris is a passionate advocate for the potential of technology and the benefits of diversity and inclusion.

He is an active member of the House of Lords and has co-authored Select Committee Reports on Democracy and Digital Technologies [2020] and Intergenerational Fairness [2019], Artificial Intelligence [2018], Financial Exclusion [2017], Social Mobility [2016] and Digital Skills [2015]

Chris is co-chair of Parliamentary Groups on Assistive Technology, Fintech, Blockchain and the 4th Industrial Revolution and has published a report; “Distributed Ledger Technologies for Public Good: leadership, collaboration and innovation” calling on the Government to look at the challenges and opportunities of this technology for improving public services. A progress update was published in November 2018.

An ex-Paralympic swimmer, Chris won nine gold, five silvers and one bronze medal across four Games, including a record haul of six golds at Barcelona 1992.

Session 2: Jack Merrylees

Head of Communications and PR, Majestic

Jack Merrylees is Head of Communications and PR at Majestic, the UK’s largest specialist wine retailer. He has worked in a number of roles around Majestic over the last eight years after starting on the shop floor, and has extensive experience both in customer and supplier facing positions.

With 200 stores nationwide, plus two in France, Majestic employs over 1,000 highly trained colleagues and is well known in the UK for its great service, extensive range and market-leading services.

Now responsible for both the internal and external communications for the retailer, Jack’s role is to engage colleagues, suppliers, customers and the media with transformation of Majestic under its new owners and board – as well as providing up to date comms and insight for the current situation with COVID and Brexit. This encompasses working closely with the press, social media, industry leaders and critics – alongside the buying and marketing teams at Majestic.

Jack has also worked across the hospitality sector, has a degree in Medieval History and Archaeology and is currently studying for the Master of Wine qualification.

Session 3 Keynote: Rooney Anand

Senior Independent Director of Morrisons plc, Chairman, Away Resorts & Purity Soft Drinks, & Former CEO, Greene King

Rooney Anand is Chairman of private equity backed businesses Away Resorts and Purity Soft Drinks. He also serves as Senior Independent Director for Wm Morrison Supermarkets plc, and is Chairman of WorldSkills UK, the skills and apprenticeship Government backed charitable foundation. Prior to this, Rooney was a director at Greene King plc from August 2001 to May 2019. Initially, Managing Director of the brewing division, he was appointed Chief Executive in May 2005 and stepped down in May 2019. During his tenure as CEO at Greene King the enterprise value of the business grew threefold to just under £5bn and the market capitalisation grew fourfold to £2.7bn; the business was transformed from a regional pub brewer to the UK’s leading pub company. Before joining Greene King, Rooney built a career in the food industry at Sara Lee Bakery UK (the bakery subsidiary of the US owned Sara Lee Corporation) and prior to that, with United Biscuits Plc.

 

Rooney has an MBA from Aston Business School, where he majored in Corporate Finance and a BSc in Construction Management from Bristol Polytechnic. He is an Honorary Professor at Aston Business School and was awarded an Honorary Doctorate by Aston University in July 2016. He was named the Lloyds ‘UK Business Leader of the Year 2016. Rooney lives in Cambridge.

Session 4: Joy Spence

Master Blender, Appleton Estate

There can be only one woman to hold the title of “First Female Master Blender in the Spirits Industry,” and that woman is Appleton Estate’s Joy Spence. A never-tiring, unbelievably skilled and deeply passionate force of nature, Joy has served as Master Blender at Appleton Estate for nearly a quarter of a century, pouring her vast knowledge and perfectionism into every bottle of Jamaica’s most-celebrated rum Joy’s never-ceasing drive to acquire knowledge led her overseas to the University of Loughborough in London, where she was awarded a Master of Science degree. In doing so, Spence registered the highest final exams scores in the school’s lauded history (a record that still holds to this day).

 

Upon completion of her studies, Joy found her way back to Jamaica, landing a post in 1981 as the Chief Chemist for J. Wray & Nephew Ltd., the maker of Appleton Rum. With Master Blender Owen Tulloch’s retirement in 1997, Joy became Master Blender. During the last 23 years, Joy has created some of the finest, most highly awarded rums the world has ever seen, including Appleton Estate 8 Year Old Reserve and Appleton Estate Rare Blend 12 Year Old.

 

Joy’s hard work and dedication, not only to Appleton Estate, but to the country of Jamaica and the global rum industry, earned her one of the highest Jamaican civilian commendations possible in 2017 – “Order of Distinction” Rank Commander – in addition to two honorary doctorate degrees, a Grand Dame Award for “Most Influential Female in the Spirits Industry” from Tales of the Cocktail, and being named one of Fortune Magazine’s “Most Influential Women in Food & Drink.” In 2018, Joy was the first female to receive the Jamaica Prime Minister Medal for Science and Technology. Joy’s amazing career is chronicled at the recently opened Joy Spence Appleton Estate Rum Experience at the Appleton Estate Distillery in St. Elizabeth Parish, Jamaica.

Session 5: Alex Depledge MBE

Founder & CEO, Resi

Alex Depledge MBE is the founder and CEO of Resi, former CEO of hassle.com, a tech entrepreneur and business expert with a refreshing and decidedly accessible approach. Her achievements in building one of the most acclaimed start-ups to emerge from London’s Tech City have made her into one of the UK’s highest profile female entrepreneurs, having won a string of industry awards and recognition – including a place on the prestigious Debrett’s 500 Most Influential People List. In June 2016, she was awarded an MBE for services to the Sharing Economy.

As CEO of Hassle.com (a services platform for domestic cleaning), Alex was responsible for taking the business from inception to over £8m in turnover in under 2 years. Under Alex’s stewardship, Hassle.com expanded from its 3 original founders to over 70 people in 4 countries. Alex has since sold the company and has gone on start a new venture in architectural design and produced Resi.co.uk aimed at disrupting the sector and using technology to create accurate design packages.

Alex’s expert views, industry knowledge and strategic leadership has led to her appointment as chair of the Coalition for a Digital Economy (Coadec – a UK wide community of tech start-ups) and founding board member of the government backed Sharing Economy UK trade body SEUK. A regular consultant to No 10 on the digital economy, enterprise and start-ups, Alex has most notably served as an advisor on the 2015 government commissioned independent review into the sharing economy.

Session 5: Steven Macatonia

Co-Founder, Union Hand-Roasted Coffee

Steven Macatonia is a co-founder of Union Hand-Roasted Coffee, a specialty roasting company launched in 2001 to supply exceptionally high-quality coffees to the developing coffee scene in the UK. Steven developed the initiative for ethical coffee sourcing described as Union Direct Trade; sustainable trading relationships are developed with coffee producers with the objective to improve livelihoods of farmers and their workers.

Steven has been an active participant in speciality coffee since 1994 whilst resident in California completing his Post-Doctoral research in biological science. He returned to the UK with Jeremy Torz, to established one of the first boutique micro-roasteries which was influential in changing face of the UK coffee scene. Steven is a trained Social Auditor, juror on Cup of Excellence, and formerly on the Board of Directors of World Coffee Research.

Session 5: Claire Strickett

Senior Planner & Author, adam&eveDDB

Claire Strickett is a senior strategist at ad agency adam&eveDDB, one of the world’s most highly-awarded creative agencies, where she works on brands including the AA and Virgin Media. She describes her role defining communications strategies to address business tasks.

She is also the co-author of Which Wine When, an everyday guide to what to drink with the food you love, which came out this August via Ebury Press. The book “…is for anyone who knows their sourdough from their sliced white but still finds themselves standing in the wine aisle making panicked decisions about what to drink based on special offers, a vague memory or a nice-looking label.” (Pengiun.co.uk, 2020)

Finale Guest: Melanie Jappy

CEO, TWS Creative

Melanie Jappy began her career as a commercial property lawyer before being seduced into television by her love of food and cooking over 20 years ago. Since then she’s worked with and discovered some of the best talent in the UK. From Raymond Blanc to Mel & Sue, her career has involved making television programmes for every major UK network including a decade at the BBC where she was BAFTA nominated for Heston Blumenthal: In Search of Perfection and received a Royal Television Society Award for her work on Who Do You Think You Are?

 

Melanie was invited to develop a television wine format by Infinity Creative Media Ltd in 2015 and so The Wine Show was born. The series in now its third season and distributed in over 100 countries worldwide. While continuing to develop and grow The Wine Show, Melanie is now working with Joe Fattorini to build TWS Creative, a new marketing, communications and content production business focussed on helping the wine world reach new audiences in innovative ways.

Finale Guest: John Moore

Co-Founder & Finance Director, Wolfcraig Distillery

John has over 25 years’ experience in financial services, the last 15 years of which has been focussed on advising successful start-up businesses to create credible business plans to make them “investment ready”.

In 2017 John was asked to put together a team to buy a majority shareholding in a new distillery. After 12 months work bringing together a first class management team and strategic plan for the business the deal fell through but the opportunity to create a new distillery, visitor centre and premium brand in the heart of Scotland remained compelling. The existing team agreed and Wolfcraig was born.

Companies below are attending this year’s Summit.
If your company is on the list, please email events@wsta.co.uk for your unique attendee registration link.

Not on the list? Purchase a company ticket using the link above to get access for you and your colleagues to the full 3-day agenda

 

Alpine Wines
Awin Barratt Siegel Wine Agencies
Accolade Wines
Australian Vintage
Berry Bros. & Rudd
Bibendum
Braid Logistics
Brighton Gin
Broadland
Campari
Cassella Family Brands
Cellar Trends
Chase Distillery
Clark Foyster Wines
Compact Global
Concha y Toro
The Co-operative
Digby Wines
Direct Wines
The Drinks Trust
Edrington-Beam Suntory
E&J Gallo
Encirc Ltd
Enotria & Coe
Ethimex
Felix Solis
Guy Anderson Wines
Hatch Mansfield
Hayman Distillers
Hillebrand (headline sponsor)
IWCA
Jeroboams
Kingsland Drinks
Laurent-Perrier
Liv-Ex
Louis Latour
New Generation Wines
New Zealand Winegrowers
One Gin
Pol Roger
Reh Kendermann UK
Remy Cointreau
Ridgeview
RT Wine Solutions
Sainsburys
Seckford Agencies
Tesco
The Wine Society
Treasury Wine Estates
Waitrose
Walker & Wodehouse
William Reed
Wine Australia
Wine Intelligence
WSET
WX Brands

The On Demand centre will be available from Friday 18 September until Friday 16 October. On Demand access is available to existing registered companies for free. Access can also be purchased through the “Buy Tickets” button above for those who did not register for the live sessions.

 

The password for access to the On Demand centre was sent to all registered attendees on Friday 18 September (from events@wsta.co.uk) If you have misplaced the email or you did not receive it, please email events@wsta.co.uk for access.

 

Access the ON DEMAND Centre here (link live from 11am, 18 Sept)

 

Five things we learnt:

1. It's vital we look beyond the current crisis, and the WSTA can help businesses do that

a. In his opening remarks, Miles Beale, WSTA CEO, outlined that he sees helping businesses do that as a key function of the WSTA moving forward

b. With businesses looking to recover from a deep recession, the WSTA can provide the horizon scanning to alert members to potential issues beyond Covid-19. The WSTA’s members will need support with this, and that is exactly what the WSTA intends to do

2. It proves to be a busy rest-of-the-year ahead, with several key milestones the WSTA are working towards

a. (another!) Budget 2020

b. Continuing to support businesses as they navigate the long road to recovery from the pandemic

c. The end of the Transition period and a new trading relationship with the EU as of 1st January 2021

d. Continuing efforts by the UK government to secure trade deals with key partners. Last week it was announced that the UK has signed such an agreement with Japan

e. The threat of a calorie labelling consultation. The WSTA will respond, but is making it known to officials that any consultation should be postponed until 2021

3. New 'Fourth Industrial Revolution' technology can transform the wine and spirit industry

a. With data in real time, that is accessible by all across the supply chain, producers and distributors can get their products into the hands of consumers quicker, whilst maintaining the utmost quality

b. We were given an example by Lord Chris Holmes MBE, whereby he tracked a bottle of wine from its production in Australia right through to it being delivered into his hands in the UK 10,000 miles away. You can read more about this in Lord Holmes’ blog post, where you will also find a link to his recently published Distributed Ledger Technology report on “Reducing Friction in International Trade”.

c. We heard that, as this technology already exists, it is incredibly frustrating that as we leave the EU that the UK government is threatening burdensome import certification forms, known as VI-1s. This paper-based form will take us back, not forward, Lord Holmes noted. He has tabled an amendment in the house that seeks to prevent the imposition of VI-1 forms as a requirement as of 1st January

d. It is ‘economically sensible, environmentally sensible, logistically sensible’ to push forward with a platform where data is shared in real time, as said Russell Davies, Managing Director of Hillebrand, who noted that as of 1st January, 600,000 additional bits of paper will be added to the EU supply chain unless innovation and technology (and common sense) is embraced

4. The UK has the chance to become a world leading border

a. This can't happen without the government accepting data and innovation as part of the process

b. We heard that it was all on the call’s belief that the government must lead on this, and can start by doing so throughout the Autumn by not imposing VI-1 form requirements

c. In order to achieve a world leading border, Lord Holmes spoke of a need for clarity from government, followed by a clear commitment to the vision and the technology to underpin it, along with the promotion of collaboration between the public and private sectors

5. There is no more space on labels – it’s time to embrace technology

a. Jack Merrylees of Majestic talked of consumers wanting vegan or vegetarian labels on labels

b. In recent years there has been calls for increasing health information on labels, including calorie information, too

c. There have even been calls from some anti-alcohol groups for the government to adopt a plain packaging policy

d. We heard that there is no more space, and instead, industry should invest in QR technology, and the government should support producers who want to be able to innovate in this way and put relevant information into the hands of consumers in a clear, simple way utilising all available technologies

e. Despite all this talk of technology, things do still go wrong! We lost Chris Holmes MBE at one point through the call, although thankfully we had him reconnected in no time

1. Constantly criticising government's inaction 'is not going to put money in the till'

a. All businesses should work within the framework they are given by government and use as much common sense as possible - customers will respect this as they head out to venues with more frequency after lockdown

b. ‘There are leaders that wait to be told what to do, and there are those that apologise if they overstep’ - those that are willing to take risks, without breaking the law or offending people, will make the most out of post-Covid opportunities, Anand argues

c. At times of crisis, you learn very quickly what is essential and what works and what isn't and doesn't - what parts of your business are essential and must be protected in order to survive? ‘Never waste a crisis’ is Rooney Anand’s mantra

d. Exceptional leadership and communication skills are required to navigate a crisis, but they do present an opportunity to galvanise a workforce - a crisis can be ‘a perfect time to drive through change’, advises Anand

e. For wine and spirit businesses, and hospitality more broadly, Anand suggests less emphasis on volume, less emphasis on discounting and a greater focus on experience and quality. Social distancing measures can make the drive for volume/capacity impossible moving forward in the same way it was before

f. Businesses that were agile and reacted quickly at the 2008 financial crisis did well, whilst those that waited to see how things played out often suffered. ‘Don't make the same mistake this time’ advised Anand

g. Humans' responses to crisis are ‘often to simplify and codify’ - this doesn't resonate with consumers, however. Striking a balance between the two can be the key to success  

2. Rooney loves wine, but the wine industry...?

a. Anand believes that the wine industry is too complicated, and needs to be simplified - he cited the example of gin - the labelling, and the language used - 'they are talking a gin language that customers not only understand, but are motivated by'

b. ‘Gin has sold the sizzle better’ says Anand

c. The wine industry doesn't help itself because it largely talks to itself - Greene King’s success is based on his predecessor as CEO bringing in voices from outside the industry, of which Rooney Anand was one. Does wine do this enough?

d. Supermarkets have made more inroads into getting those that aren’t interested in wine engaged with the category than the wine industry, and the industry must recognise that, he argues  

3. Both of our speakers today had points to make about diversity within the industry

a. Diversity of thought, ethnic background, gender and age are all vital and must be embraced, said Rooney Anand. This will help the industry talk to and engage with the consumer in a way Rooney does not believe they do enough of currently

b. Joy encouraged women in the industry not to focus on their gender, but instead to focus on honing their craft and being deeply knowledgeable about their field  

4. Rum is special, but just how special? Joy Spence from Appleton Rum Estate in Jamaica explained….

a. Rum can be enjoyed in a cocktail, or sipped neat to enjoy its complexity. The provenance of rum is also becoming more important to consumers, particularly younger ones

b. ‘Rum brings out joyfulness in all those that drink it’!

c. It's also complex, and we heard just how rigorous the process is to appoint a new taster to the Appleton Estate sensory panel

d. Cast limestone hills surrounding the Appleton estate act as a brilliant water filter, ensuring the soil at Appleton is rich and fertile for the best quality sugar cane - Joy believes that makes Appleton's just that little bit more special!

e. A complex aging process takes place inside the rum barrels - Joy spoke that people have dedicated entire PHDs to studying the aging of rum

f. ‘How would you build a market for rum’ was one question, with Joy’s answer being to ‘have a 30 year plan’!

g. Rums in Jamaica benefit from 'tropical aging' where the climate allows rum to age 3 times faster than in cooler locations - this has been verified by Scotch whisky producers who've sent product to the island where it has aged three times as fast thanks to the magic of tropical aging

h. Rum has suffered from snobbery in the past, but there are signs this is changing - keep your eyes peeled for the latest WSTA Market Report, released later this week - could it be that rum was actually the spirit of lockdown?  

5. We learned what advice Joy would give to young people beginning their careers in the industry

a. Focus on your craft

b. Be passionate about what you’re doing

c. Become an expert in your field, and knowledgeable about all the processes involved in the making of your product

d. Always be willing to learn from others in the industry, even those at rival companies!

e. Finally, don’t believe that you know everything - Joy has been working at Appleton for over 40 years and is still learning new techniques, new technologies, and new processes – and continues to embrace them!

1. There’s no handbook for handling Covid-19

a. Union Hand-Roasted Coffee have altered staff working practices to help keep them safe as they are coming back to work, and have launched an e-commerce platform to adapt to the changing nature of how their customers buy their coffee

b. We learned that consumer behaviour has changed – as an example, Steven Macatonia spoke to how decreased footfall has led to some roasters being unable to fulfil contracts, which has a knock-on effect on the communities that grow the beans

c. Alex Depledge of Resi noted that surveying houses is very difficult during lockdown, and that much of how their business used to run simply cannot take place whilst lockdowns or social distancing measures are in place. Alex cited that planning is key to be able to navigate around the issues the virus is presenting

d. The business failing ‘is not an option’, Steven said - they had to find a way to navigate the crisis because ‘too many people rely on us as employers’. Alex echoed this and said she felt a moral responsibility to her staff

e. Claire Strickett of adamandeveDDB talked of the risks to staff of burnout, and the need for greater awareness of mental health in the advertising industry. Coronavirus, Claire said, has exacerbated these challenges  

2. More time at home means people are engaging with brands in different ways

a. Claire noted that fragmentation of media has been happening for a long time, but the pandemic has accelerated this fragmentation

b. Footfall on transport has plummeted, and so the channels for advertisers to utilise are changing

c. People spending more time at home alters what advertising they engage with – they spend more time browsing social media, for example

d. All our panellists agreed that consumers are looking for authenticity - brands that can demonstrate this authenticity, for example demonstrating ecological credentials, stand to benefit

e. Meanwhile, Alex's communications have centred on helping people make their homes work harder for them, which is especially important as over the last 6 months people have spent so much more time at home, and their home has changed, possibly forever, into an office space, a place to keep fit, as well as all the things it was before

f. Steven noted that, for many, preparing their daily coffee was something of a ritual – Union’s communications have centred on promoting the art of the ritual, and using this time of the day as an opportunity for escape from everything going on in the world currently  

3. ‘The office is not dead!’

a. Coronavirus has shown so much can be done from home, but Alex takes issue with the idea that the office is dead - 'creativity cannot happen over zoom', she argues

b. There needs to be a balance between old ways of working and how we have been forced to work since March, Steven argues - but businesses that rely on office footfall, coffee roasters, for example, will have to adapt because things won’t go back to the way they were  

4. 84% of people say watching a brand video will help them make a decision - so what does it mean to be a 'digitally native brand'?

a. Wolfcraig Distillery utilise blockchain as a way of promoting transparency - you can read more about blockchain by checking out Tuesday's 5 things

b. The distillery has also looked to raise capital through tokens aimed at whisky enthusiasts, and were pipped to the post to be the first to do this by a bourbon distillery in the USA

c. Digital transactions are becoming the first port of call, with technology having now reached a point where brands are able to reach their fans and consumers directly - this is a good thing for the consumer because there are less people taking margin, argues John Moore, co-founder of the distillery  

5. How can brands punch through all the digital noise? 'Understanding what your brand is, and what you want it to be' will help you communicate this to potential consumers using digital platforms

a. With constant notifications on smart devices and endless social media scrolling, are brands able to connect to the consumer like before?

b. Melanie Jappy of The Wine Show underlines the importance of storytelling to reach and engage their audience, and brands can use this storytelling element across digital platforms to cut through this noise

c. Melanie also recommends brands increase their 'digital nativism' and invest in individuals and companies that that can make your content shine on video

d. If something looks cheap and doesn’t send the right message, it can put off potential customers forever – Wolfcraig Distillery utilise video for their social content and this is an area they focus on

e. Far from making the process less human, your digital presence provides opportunities to make the process more human, and provides a platform to foster emotional engagement with your brand

f. Marketing to millennials is essential - it's much harder to change the minds of older people!

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