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Allegrini 2018
WINE & MARKETING

Yes to “Prosecco System”, no to “Prosecco Hills” without Conegliano Valdobbiadene

A common code of ethics and communication language between the Docg Consortium, producers, institutions will be created to strengthen brand protection
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Credit: Arcangelo Pia

Yes to the “Prosecco System”, no to the “Prosecco Hills” without Conegliano Valdobbiadene: in a nutshell, revolving around these two choices is the issue discussed in recent weeks among the main players in the Conegliano Valdobbiadene Prosecco Docg Unesco Heritage area. Who, on the one hand, faced with the growing success of bubbly in the world, in order to protect the brand starting also from the place that gives it its name, Prosecco, in Trieste, have in recent decades made a “system” between the different Denominations, Conegliano Valdobbiadene Prosecco Docg, Prosecco Doc and Asolo Prosecco Docg, “widening” the district and embracing Veneto and Friuli Venezia Giulia; on the other, the very recognition of the Prosecco Hills of Conegliano and Valdobbiadene as a World Heritage Site has brought their uniqueness back to the fore. But the needs for simpler and more direct marketing and communication, as is often the case, also led to calling them “Colline del Prosecco” or “Prosecco Hills”. And so it was written on the Trenitalia/Mom shuttle bus service “Prosecco Hills Link”, whose tour, which started in recent days to take tourists to discover the DOCG hills from Conegliano to Valdobbiadene, was short-lived, interrupted by the producers’ request to add to the name Conegliano-Valdobbiadene, as well as in the signage of the “Cammino delle Colline del Prosecco”, promoted by the Associazione per il Patrimonio delle Colline di Conegliano e Valdobbiadene (Association for the Heritage of the Hills of Conegliano and Valdobbiadene), so as not to convey incomplete and misleading communication, but to increase awareness of the Denomination and differentiate Prosecco Docg from other products.
If these are chronicles and premises, it is from today the outcome of the meeting between the Consorzio di Tutela del Conegliano Valdobbiadene Prosecco Docg and the proponents of the letter sent to the Consortium, to the President of the Region Luca Zaia, to the Unesco Association and Trenitalia, for the name change, in which the value pillars on which the communication and promotion of the Denomination rest were reaffirmed, and shared again. In particular, it was shared to further strengthen the activity of protection and supervision of the brand and, after extensive discussion, explains a note from the Consortium, “the guidelines of a fruitful collaboration between the Consortium and the territory were outlined. The first intent will be the drafting of a code of ethics promoted by the Consortium to be shared with all members and territorial institutions. In addition, it will be essential to define a common language in the communication of the territory, in order to avoid confusion or disorientation, while respecting the principles of protection, further strengthened, that the Consortium has in its DNA. Therefore, greater coordination with all actors, first and foremost with the Association for the Heritage of the Hills of Conegliano and Valdobbiadene, will be essential to adopt a common and incontrovertible lexicon”.
“In the face of this heated debate on the name given to services and tourism promotion activities operating in the territory, we can only do our part in supporting everything that goes in the direction that leads to a solution that unites everyone in favor of and in respect for our territory and its future - says the president of the Consorzio di Tutela del Conegliano Valdobbiadene Prosecco Docg, Elvira Bortolomiol - thanks to the real will to reach an agreement, the conviction that working in an atmosphere of transparency and mutual exchange is the only way to respect the common values of the Denomination was also reinforced among the parties. We emphasized and shared that within an associative reality it is important to maintain proper conduct based on confrontation and sharing. I believe that these are the fundamental pillars for a dialogue truly aimed at charting the future of this territory”.
The authors of the letter sent in recent days and accompanied by a collection of signatures of 160 producers, explained how “in order to improve the competitiveness and visibility of the entire Prosecco System, it is necessary to initiate a real collaboration between the Consorzio del Prosecco Docg and the other Consortia (Doc and Asolo)” as a “key strategy to achieve greater recognition globally and to benefit from the sharing of resources, experience and knowledge, as well as from greater negotiating power in relation to international markets. 
It is important that the collaboration be managed fairly and transparently, with a focus on positive synergies and with the goal of promoting the quality and authenticity of Prosecco Docg, Doc and Asolo: certainly obstacles may arise in balancing the interests of different territories and producers, but, if managed well, these challenges can be overcome to the benefit of all involved”. For the letter’s authors, “at the forefront, there is the definition of common and shared objectives in order to solidly plan and allocate resources: above all, it is a matter of identifying areas in which the consortia’s skills and resources complement each other. It is then essential to establish open and transparent communication channels to prevent misunderstandings and conflicts, define roles and responsibilities for efficient use of resources, create a decision-making structure to avoid disputes and slowdowns, share resources (intellectual and material), and collegially monitor the progress of activities. The strategy of collaboration among the Prosecco Consortia is promising and can lead to greater competitiveness and visibility globally, provided there is a willingness on everyone’s part to practice open communication, adapt to changing market conditions and maintain the goal of promoting the quality and authenticity of the Prosecco System”.
Producers also formally invited to a public dialogue by the president of the Association for the Heritage of the Prosecco Hills of Conegliano and Valdobbiadene Marina Montedoro, with the intent of finding a solution useful for the entire territory, and to find the harmony necessary to continue working with the goal of protecting a unique heritage.

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