FOR BRUNELLO DI MONTALCINO, A WINE-CHRISTMAS AND AN ELECTRONIC IDENTITY CARD

The Consorzio di Montalcino is one of the first in Italy to provide a complete tracing system that
can be used either though the internet or with a mobile telephone.

Montalcino, 17th December 2009 - For 2 out of 5 Italians wine is the most popular present this Christmas. This data confirms the latest Format-Confcommercio survey, according to which the most bought items will be clothing (70.5%), books (63.2%), food (56.7%). Wine (40.9%) sports equipment (35.4%), CDs and DVDs (33.9%).

Nevertheless, the Deloitte data mentions a dip in spending during the Christmas period of 2.5% and the most hit in many cases will be the food and wine companies.

However for Brunello di Montalcino, despite the recession, the forecasts for Christmas consumption are optimistic. Precisely during the holiday season, Brunello will total 14% of its annual turnover.

“We receive many requests for our products during the Christmas season – says the President of the Consorzio del Vino Brunello di Montalcino, Patrizio Cencioniand we are fairly confident about this year too. We don’t expect a growth in consumption, but we should maintain last year’s position. After a halt in demand we have actually witnessed a slight recovery of the market. This shows that people continue to appreciate our products and to believe in us”.

But how do we respond to the aficionados, the connoisseurs and simply the occasional buyers who are looking for greater certainty in the product they are acquiring? To deal with this issue, the Consorzio del Vino Brunello di Montalcino has put in action the traceability of Brunello di Montalcino even by means of an SMS.

Already some years ago the Consorzio perfected a system of traceability through its own website (www.consorziobrunellodimontalcino.it) providing an excellent service to careful, more demanding consumers. To access the service all that is needed is to follow the website instructions and to fill in the appropriate space, the three letters and the eight numbers on the seal required on every bottle of Brunello. At the end of this simple procedure a series of valuable data appear: vintage, number of bottles produced in that particular lot, reference to the certification of the controlling body, specific analytic data (alcohol, extract and acidic contents), name of the producer with his address, telephone number, email, as well as the direct link to his website.

Now these same data can be found by means of a mobile telephone. The procedure is similar to that of the website, but is effected by sending an SMS to the number 366.3008880. The SMS text must be composed of the three letters (in capitals) and eight numbers that figure on the seal of the bottle (e.g.: 0.75 for the normal bordelaise bottle, inserting the dot between the numbers instead of a comma). After a short moment and SMS will arrive with the answer containing all the data.

The Consorzio for the Safeguarding of the Montalcino wines is one of the first in Italy to have set up a system which offers total traceability: the electronic “identity card” has indeed been available since 1999, but now it has been enhanced by the SMS service.

“This is an important step forwards in the concept of total transparency and traceability – concludes the President of the Consorzio del Vino Brunello di Montalcino Patrizio CencioniWith this system consumers have, above all a guarantee that the seal does correspond to the bottle on which it is stuck. Moreover producers and consumers make a kind of pact that does not end in the acquisition of the bottle but goes on even afterwards, guaranteeing information and assistance to whoever buys a wine within the Montalcino territory. This electronic identity card is just the final phase, the last step in a series of controls effected all along the line, from the vineyard to the bottle, safeguarding producers and above all consumers”.