Eco-Shipping: A company in New York has come up with a pretty cool new way for wineries to transport bottles to consumers. As more and more wineries develop direct-to-consumer relationships, the need for shipping containers has grown. Ecovative Design Inc has developed new packaging materials made from mycelium, the hidden roots of mushrooms and fungi that form the foundation of the forest floor, as reported by Wines & Vines. The mycelium binds together forming a strong rigid material that provides that same protection as Styrofoam, but instead is completely recyclable.
The Easter Bunny Likes Wine: According to data from research group Symphony IRI, this past Easter Holiday had a spike (11% growth) in domestic wine sales compared to last April. Analysis of the data shows that Easter has become a big wine drinking holiday for Americans, as reported by Wines & Vines. The segments that had the fastest growth from last year was from red wines at $8-$10.
Pitt Goes from Diamond to Cellar: Word is actor Brad Pitt’s latest role will be as part of the celluloid version of the controversial tome, “The Billionaire’s Vinegar,” which tracks the story of rare wines found in Paris and subsequently auctioned off, according to Decanter magazine. Why is this story special? The controversial bottles include one vintage – a 1787 Lafite – that was bid up to the highest auction price ever paid for a bottle of wine. We’ll see if Pitt can pull off his wine industry role.
Ascentia on Gallo Radar: Wine conglomerate E&J Gallo is reported to be making its first foray into the Washington state wine market, looking to acquire the Columbia Winery and Covey Run brands from Ascentia Wine Estates. Due to ongoing debt problems, Ascentia has been divesting itself from some of its winery brands, according to Shanken News Daily.