Albéric Bichot has been elected President of the Union des Maisons de Vins de Grande Bourgogne (UMVGB) at the industry body’s General Assembly held on Friday 26 February 2021.
During his acceptance speech, the new president underscored the economic solidarity of the Bourgogne wine industry during the pandemic. “The crisis we are currently undergoing, linked to the global pandemic, is creating deep shifts in the way we live and consume. The Bourgogne winegrowing region must prepare itself for the post-COVID world that will soon be upon us,” he explained.
Albéric Bichot underlined the key issues the industry will need to tackle as follows:
- Sustainable development across the region and the CSR strategy of the Bourgogne region’s winegrowing businesses. Consumers want more in terms of respecting the environment and the industry must commit even further in this area, while respecting the different circumstances of each
- The resolution of the Airbus-Boeing conflict which is poisoning EU-USA relationships and unfairly harming the French wine industry with a 25% ad valorem
- Wine tourism, with the opening of the Cités des Vins de Bourgogne network in Chablis, Mâcon, and These sites must become new ambassadors for Bourgogne wines by offering tastings of course, but also by presenting the great richness of the winegrowing culture of the Bourgogne region to the general public.
“There are many other key areas requiring attention, of course, and I cannot outline them all here, but it seems to me that it is critical to focus on the ‘structuring’ aspect of these actions. We embody terroir winegrowing and that is a reference now for the international wine market. Sales figures from 2020 have demonstrated our capacity for resilience, and we need to stay on track to preserve this leadership and recognition,” Bichot continued.
“This work involves close cooperation with our primary partner, the vinegrowing sector, but also with national bodies like the Union des Maisons & Marques de Vin (UMVIN) and the Fédération des Exportateurs de Vins & Spiritueux (FEVS). We cannot do this alone – it’s about teamwork at every step of the way,” he concluded.
Albéric Bichot is a graduate of the Institut Supérieur de Commerce, and has been CEO of the Albert Bichot wine house since 1996. He is also a member of the Permanent Committee of the Bourgogne Wine Board (BIVB) and is on the Bassin Viticole Bourgogne-Beaujolais-Jura-Savoie Council.
The UMVGB brings together the major wine houses of the Bourgogne and Beaujolais regions, numbering around 70 enterprises. These wine houses account for some 60% of all Bourgogne wine sales. The UMVGB is a member of the Fédération des Négociants Eleveurs de Grande Bourgogne which represents around 100 wine houses in the Bourgogne, Beaujolais, Jura, Savoie, and Bugey regions. Together, they account for some €1.6 billion in revenue with a workforce of around 5,000.