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International operators were up compared to 2016 from the United States (+6%), Germany (+3%), United Kingdom (+4%), China (+12%), Russia (+42%), Japan (+2%), Northern Europe (+2%), the Netherlands and Belgium (+6%) and Brazil (+29%). Debuts for buyers from Panama and Senegal.

Veronafiere was home for four days to 4,270 exhibiting companies from 30 countries, up in overall terms by 4% and in particular for international producers (+74%). Vinitaly and the City attracted 35,000 wine lovers to the historic centre of Verona and the town of Bardolino.

After four days of business and promotion for the wine world, the 51st Vinitaly in Verona closed after attracting 128,000 visitors from 142 countries.

The international character of the event was further strengthened and this year attendance by accredited top international buyers grew to 30,200 (+8% over 2016) out of total international attendance of 48,000. This result was achieved through investments in incoming operations by Veronafiere in collaboration with the Ministry of Economic development and the ICE-Italian Trade Agency.

“We symbolically christened Vinitaly 2017 as the ’50+1 edition’,” said the President of Veronafiere, Maurizio Danese, “as a way to represent the first effective step in the new course of development looking into the future for the next 50 years. These results reward our move towards a clearer distinction between business occasions in the exhibition centre and the off-show event dedicated to wine lovers in the city centre. Vinitaly and the City this year attracted 35,000 wine lovers to the historic centre of Verona and the town of Bardolino. The goal now is to continue in this direction, on the strength of the new tools made available following the transformation of Veronafiere into a joint-stock equity company backed up by a business plan totalling 100 million euros, with targeted investments in the wine value chain and digital transformation”.

“Facts and figures for this edition,” as the CEO of Veronafiere, Giovanni Mantovani, explained “testify to the growth of Vinitaly’s b2b role on an international scale, with increasingly qualified buyers arriving from all over the world.A glimpse at the top ten for international operators highlights increases in attendance by almost all countries: United States (+6%), Germany (+3%), United Kingdom (+4%), China (+12%), France and Canada (stable), Russia (+42%), Japan (+2%), Northern Europe (+2%), the Netherlands and Belgium (+6%). This list is joined by the fine performance by Brazil (+29%), not to mention debuts at Vinitaly by Panama and Senegal. As for Italy itself, we saw consolidation of attendance from all regions in the country”.

With more than 4,270 exhibitors from 30 countries (up in overall terms by 4% over 2016, especially as regards international companies, up by 74%), Vinitaly confirmed its status as the most important international wine and spirits exhibition as well as an occasion for critical reflection on the Italian and European wine sector, as highlighted by the presence of the Minister for Agriculture, Maurizio Martina, the European Commissioner for Agriculture, Phil Hogan, Ministers of Agriculture from Malta and Poland and the Russian Deputy Minister for Agriculture.

During the event, spotlights focused on consolidated (but not mature) and emerging markets, with special attention on future developments in the wake of possible protectionism by the United States and the repercussions of Brexit.

Yet close attention was also paid to the East, with Verona and Vinitaly as the departure point for a new ‘Silk Road’ for Italian wine making its way to China through e-commerce and educational paths. 1919, the Chinese online to offline distribution giant for wines&spirits signed an agreement during Vinitaly with the Vinitaly International Academy and founder Robert Yang promised to increase Italian sales in China by 2020 to more than 2 million bottles generating turnover of least 68 million euros. China chose Vinitaly as its European point of reference in the wine sector, as also confirmed by the arrival in Verona of other commercial giants such as Alibaba, Cofco, Winehoo and Suning.

The four days of the event not only hosted b2b meetings but also almost 400 conferences, seminars and training curses focusing on the world of wine. As ever, there was an impressive calendar of tastings: more than 250 were organised directly by Vinitaly and regional consortia alone, including – among others – an exclusive event celebrating 50 years of Sassicaia.

The offering at Vinitaly was integrated and expanded, as every year, by the simultaneous scheduling of Sol&Agrifood, the quality agro-food show, and Enolitech, the event focusing on accessories and technologies for olive oil and wine production celebrating its 20th edition.