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Grappes & Le Parisien
Everything you always wanted to know about wine but never dared to ask

If Paris has become the wine capital with the Wine Paris exhibition held from February 11 to 13, France is the world capital of innovation for the wine industry.

We wanted to carry out this study to highlight the dynamism of the wine sector in France. Too often, we hear that the wine market is sclerosed, that it has not known (or even cannot know?) its digital revolution... in short, that innovation has no place in this traditional sector.

As part of the Wine Paris exhibition, which aims to make Paris the world's wine capital, we felt it was important to show that France had a major role to play in terms of innovation for the wine industry.

This infographics proves that a large number of actors have brought innovations by creating cutting-edge technological tools to help winegrowers in their work, both in the vineyards, in the cellars and for the distribution of their products.

As part of this study, we identified nearly 30 companies that have made wine growers' services their main activity, divided into 5 main categories:

  • Raw material suppliers
  • Tools to help the vine and the cellar (monitoring of the vines, decision support for winegrowers and maintenance of the vine and winemaking equipment),
  • Domain management and marketing support tools
  • Direct distribution actors in the domain
  • Tools to assist in the marketing of the domain

The criteria to be included in this study: be a French company that is less than 5 years old and whose service or innovation is intended for winegrowers.

Platforms to enable winegrowers to obtain raw materials online

These platforms, like Agriconomy and Meshectares.comallow winegrowers to obtain both raw materials (phytosanitary products) and agricultural equipment (tractors, equipment) with an extremely wide range of products since they integrate the offer of most of the suppliers in their market.

The company Grouper Vitiagri plays the collective card and offers a group purchasing service between farmers and winegrowers with the aim of optimising costs. Comparateur Agricole is also part of this approach by offering to buy and resell the raw material.

These raw material suppliers seek above all to facilitate and simplify the purchase of raw materials, helped by a product and tool rating system that will reassure winegrowers.

Technological tools at the service of winemaking and cellar maintenance

Current innovations in winemaking and vineyard monitoring involve the use of modern technologies such as data collection to guide winemakers' decisions. The development of these innovations responds to a real underlying trend within wine estates: The eco-responsibility of wine producers with a clear increase in vineyards undergoing conversion. This marked trend is leading winegrowers to a radical change in their working methods and technical itineraries.

Tools dedicated to vineyard monitoring

The production of a quality wine requires a healthy vine. Among the innovative players, some of them have set up systems for analysing the state of health of the vines and vats, others tools for collecting data on the state of the vines to enable winegrowers to intervene at a key moment.

Concerning the state of health of the vines, Great and Scanopy have set up measurement and monitoring tools to analyse the condition of the vine and regulate the winegrowers' interventions.

Tools dedicated to the maintenance of the vine and winemaking equipment

Weed control robots, that's what Naio Technology and Vitibot. Innovation? The vine is a particular terrain on which traditional agricultural equipment cannot be used. That's why these two companies have designed robots that can pass between the vines to remove weeds and keep the vines in shape.

In the same way, DiiMotion has created an ecological solution for spraying vines and UV Boosting a service to stimulate plants by controlling their exposure to UV rays. In the cellar, R-tech Oenologie has set up connected tanks and barrels to help in the vinification and maturing process, in particular by controlling the hygiene of the equipment.

Decision-making tools for winegrowers

The Big Data in the service of the vine has arrived! Some companies have set up connected sensors to collect external information, as is the case with meteorological tools such as Meteus and StartUp from the Isagri group, WeenatSencrop or WeatherMeasures.

These innovations in the service of precision agriculture enable winegrowers to adapt to the weather and adjust their interventions, for example. The same applies to Carbon Bee, which chooses to collect data using cameras and aerial drones.

Tools and software to assist in the management, development and marketing of the wine estate

To limit the time spent in offices dedicated to the administrative management of the domain, many companies have implemented administrative software for accounting, stock management and monitoring in order to simplify the management of the domain on a larger scale.

Tools to assist in the administrative and commercial management of the domain

Bewease, Vinosoft and PrimusSoft have put their expertise at the service of integrated domain management and commercial management. Indeed, these companies allow to gather in the same tool the stocks of bottles, the accounting follow-up or the commercial management. In the same logic of simplifying marketing, Vinovae simplifies tasting thanks to a 75cl bottle sampling system in 2cl, without losing the quality of the wine. The young company La vie du Vin has set up a system for tracking vintages so that winegrowers can see the route of their bottles from the cellar to the supplier (cellarmen, hotels, restaurants and grocery stores) or on the table of the private consumer. WineServices allows the optimization of the distribution of great wines with a precise view of the places where they are distributed all over the world.

There are also platforms dedicated to financing the wine sector such as WineFunding and FundoVino or Miimosa. For the latter, the objective is then to support local producers in two forms: MiiMOSA (equity financing with a counterpart (up to €70,000) and equity loan (up to €200,000) or MiiMOSA transition (agricultural, food and energy transition projects): equity financing with loans or bonds (up to €1,000,000).

Tools to support Business Development in the field

The 1st Wine Tourism Conference, held in Paris in November 2018, helped to promote this rapidly developing sector. The associated objective is to promote French wine-growing territories and to promote them at European and international level, as Hervé Novelli pointed out last November.

Many actors have launched themselves in recent years into wine tourism in order to allow winegrowers to easily offer, through online platforms, wine tourism activities directly at the estate.

After launching a direct distribution service in the field for professionals and individuals, Les Grappes has, through the acquisition of Vinizoslaunched last November its wine tourism platform. Rue des Vignerons and Oenotourisme.com are in line with this same trend and offer through their web platforms direct bookings from the estate for cellar visits and tastings.

Direct distribution platforms of the domain

Current innovations in the wine sector also involve the creation of marketplaces (or marketplace) to help winegrowers in the direct distribution of their products. In accordance with the scope of our study, we have decided to highlight only those actors who favour the direct winegrower and the short circuit.

Since 2014, Les Grappes and Twil (The Wine I Love) have been putting winegrowers in contact with professionals and individuals for the former and individuals exclusively for the latter. Actiwine completes this panorama by focusing on the professional market.

This overview of innovation trends at the service of winegrowers highlights a real dynamic in the wine sector. Many jobs (at least 400) have been created by these different companies, which are part of a real underlying trend: innovation is a vector of opportunities for the players in the wine sector. The actors of the agricultural sector have understood this well by leaving the main part to Agritech in each professional event. An example to follow?

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