Like formica, kleenex and duct tape another category of generic brands is under threat. This time wine.
What is common about the following?
- Cabernet Sauvingon
- Pinot Noir
- Sauvingon Blanc
So what happens when climate change raises the temperature by say 2-degrees? In California, that could reduce the growing area by 30-50% by the year 2040. This creates a serious marketing challenge as noted in a piece on NPR.
An enduring brand adapts to the changing times; it has to. But when the roots of your business are based literally in roots that have come from grafted/cloned grape vines there are substantial risks as the environment changes. A wine designated a 'California Chardonnay' must come from chardonnay grapes grown in California - it is the law. But what happens when demand goes up and supply goes down? What happens when the category itself shrinks?
Maybe a lesson from [yellow tail] provides insight. They became a successful brand in part by producing a wine that isn't very winey. Wine is known for being tannic and acidic - two tastes that most people simply don't like. So, they made wines that aren't tannic and acidic for the 85% of the US market that didn't drink wine. They re-featured wine by not focusing on the nuances of terroir (where the grapes are grown) which is often the basis of wine debates but rather on the simplest of elements - the variety. From a production point of view this brand strategy allows grapes from many locations to be used to create a consistent product; nobody is likely to do vertical tastings of this brand. By simplifying the decision process and making a less stringent product they made it very easy for consumers to choose. As a result they sell more wine in the US than all French producers combined.