In a first for the international wine industry, the heads of five New World national marketing bodies will be sharing a panel at the Down2Earth exhibition at ProWein 2011 in late March. The occasion will see them articulating their respective visions for a greener future and providing updates on what their countries are currently doing to advance sustainability.

Down2Earth, the three-day show within-a-show at the Düsseldorf ProWein Trade Fair, will also be exploring innovative New World wine pairings with typical German cuisine and showcasing exciting new developments in national signature wine varietals.

The Down2Earth initiative is an affiliation at ProWein of five normally competing New World wine-producing nations. These are Argentina, Chile, South Africa, the US and New Zealand. They are collaborating for the second year in succession, following their highly popular debut that drew capacity crowds last year.

This year’s event will run from Sunday, March 27 to Tuesday, March 29, with a series of seminars, tastings and wine and food pairings, chaired by a range of top-rated specialists that include Lynne Sherriff MW, who heads the Institute of Wine Masters in the UK; Prof Monika Christmann of the Geisenheim Research Centre in Germany; economist and wine writer Jürgen Mathäß; climate change specialist and wine writer Pancho Campo MW; Chandra Kurt, a Swiss-based wine writer; and Felicity Carter, editor-in-chief of Wine Business International. They will be joined by three award-winning sommeliers: Romaine Audrerie of Scotland’s Hotel du Vin in Edinburgh; Alessandro Marchesan, who is the group sommelier for London’s Zuma and Roka restaurants and has also served as a judge for Decanter World Wine Awards; and Christina Fischer of Germany, who writes extensively about wine and food and runs her own restaurant in Cologne.

South African-born Sherriff, who consults on wine worldwide and will be participating in three panels, believes “Down2Earth is an outstanding opportunity to showcase to the highly influential international wine community and the ongoing excellence and progress evident in the wines of the host countries.”

Prof Christmann, who heads the Geisenheim Research Centre’s department of oenology and wine technology, says attendance is critical for those concerned with sustainability in the wine industry: “Sustainability is becoming a driving force for all of us in our daily life to protect our globe and preserve the world for future generations. We’ll be exploring how, by taking small, individual steps, members of the wine industry can make a meaningful and lasting impact in learning how to protect non-renewable and scarce resources.”

Fischer, chair of the wine and food seminar, will be leading a line-up of wines from the five participating New World countries paired with modern German and international cuisine. “We’ll be looking for harmony and complexity to challenge our senses as well as opulence and sumptuousness in these combinations.”

Further information and bookings go to www.down2earth-prowein.com

For more information contact:
Wines of Argentina:
Andrew Maidment
0044 7815647429

California Wine Institute:
Christine Berthold +49 (0) 421-217020
Cell phone +49 (0) 178-2170200
Email: berthold@wineinstitute.de

Wines of Chile:
Juan Somavia (Chile) +56 9776 75086 or Michael Cox (UK) +44 (0) 7785 291503
Email:jsomavia@winesofchile.org Michael@winesofchile.org.uk

New Zealand Winegrowers:
David Cox +44 (0)20 7973 8079 mobile +44 (0)7974 22898
Email: davidc@nzwine.com

Wines of South Africa:
Su Birch +27 21 825630677 or +27 21 8833860
Email: su@wosa.co.za
Pippa Carter + 27 21 883 3860
Email: pippa@wosa.co.za