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Generic advertising for Languedoc wines

Languedoc wines are to be promoted solely under the umbrella name of ‘Languedoc’, decanter.com has learned.

The Conseil Interprofessionnel des Vins du Languedoc (CIVL) has revealed it will promote its range of appellations solely under the generic term of Languedoc , and it plans to work with other producers to promote the idea of the ‘South of France’ in export markets.

At its 3 December AGM, the CIVL announced details of the marketing strategy for 2005 supported by a €4m budget, including a 30% increase in expenditure earmarked for export promotions and advertising.

The boldest move is the willingness of the three largest regional associations – the CIVL, the Conseil Interprofessionnel des Vins du Roussillon (CIVR) and Vins de Pays d’Oc growers – to pool their ideas and resources. The combined pot for export campaigns comes to €2.7m.

According to the CIVL, taking the idea of a common terroir should communicate the diversity of the region’s wines better to the consumer.

Individual Languedoc Appellations include traditional red blends such as Fitou, Corbières and the ‘cru’ subregions of Minervois la Livinière and Pic Saint Loup. These will be marketed alongside Vins de Pays ‘cépages’ such as Syrah, Chardonnay and Grenache, and Côtes du Roussillon wines.

‘Working together is fundamental; there’s too much complexity and we need to simplify things. South of France is more abstract yet means more,’ said négociant Michel Laroche, who already labels his varietal wines ‘South of France’.

Putting Languedoc in the spotlight also fits in with plans to launch an inter-regional appellation, an idea awaiting approval from the INAO (the international appellation authority of France).

The advertising campaign in English centres on the Languedoc cross logo, which appears on specially embossed bottles, and the catchphrase ‘Fine French Mediterranean wines’.

Exports of Languedoc-Roussillon wines for the first eight months of 2004 were down 7% in volume and 3% in value. However, Canada, Japan and the US show positive trends outperforming all other countries, albeit from a smaller base.

Written by Richard James

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