2020 was a breakthrough year for much of the wine industry, but now 2021 is here and there is light at the end of the tunnel. Vaccines have a positive effect on COVID-19. Online sales, virtual tastings and opening hours of tasting rooms have enabled many wineries to focus on DTC sales. However, when Nielsen Data looked at the wineries that depended on the wholesale channel, it found a 24% increase in sales during the pandemic, putting many of them in a stronger position than expected. If history is anything to go by, there are great opportunities as the economy recovers from difficult times, and many expect this to be the case for the wine industry in 2021.
This is the ideal time to invest, especially with the lowest interest rates since the mid-2000s, says Alberto Migliardi, CEO of Maspack Packaging USA.
The wineries tell us they are ready to resolve the aspects of the CapEx projects they suspended in March and April, adds Dan Bock, Business Development Manager at Maspack.
For wineries using the wholesale channel, the long-term savings of a new bottling line outweigh any short-term pandemic effects. Maspack systems enable wineries to meet the stricter packaging requirements of wholesale channels. Frank Family Vineyards is one of those progressive wineries.
In the Frank family, assistant winemaker Corey Gardner says: We have considered purchasing a new, more automated bottling line to address the growing labour shortage we have seen in the valley in recent years, as this would reduce our operator’s needs from 5 to 6 people to 3. With the pandemic looming on the horizon, this really seemed to be the best and only way to maintain a social distance while ensuring the smooth running of production and the safety of our employees.
The Maspack system not only compensates for the shrinking pool of labour, but also enables wineries to lure experienced workers away from tedious and potentially damaging tasks.
The new line of the Frank family will be installed next February and is the result of a collaboration with Maspack and MBF North America. Maspack & MBF are Italian companies with local offices in California specializing in the wine and spirits market. The two companies are fully integrated to provide a first-class complete technical solution and excellent after-sales service.
Maspack’s partner in the construction of many of these facilities is another Italian company based in Sonoma County: MBF North America. MBF focuses on wine production and takes care of filling, capping and labelling, while Maspack automates packaging and palletising functions. These computer-controlled systems seamlessly transfer tasks and bottles to each other with a precision that only robotics can deliver.
The adage that happiness prefers daring is always true and for many in the wine industry the time seems ripe to make this investment in the future.
For more information, visit maspackusa.com or call 707-757-7725 directly.