As nine EU member states file objections against Ireland’s recent win to place alcohol warning labels on all bottles of wines, beer and spirits, Italy’s renowned sommelier Luca Maroni explains the error of this blanket legislation and the unique and proven benefits of wine and oenological culture.
Luca Maroni Explains
“Communicating wine and its world is fundamental, and at this historical moment it is an urgent necessity, because the entire wine sector, not only in Italy, is under attack,” declared Sensorial Wine Analyst Luca Maroni at this year’s XXII edition of I Migliori Vini Italiani.
“The utmost attention of our time regarding the well-being of the individual must take into account that wine is a product that is part of the Mediterranean diet and is rich in antioxidants, which are very important in fighting cellular aging: it is part of our European and Italian tradition and is the best that the Italic genius has conceived since Leonardo da Vinci,” he concluded at the kermesse held by Sens Eventi at the Salone delle Fontane in Eur Rome.
Ireland’s Fight for Alcohol Warning Labels
The reflection by the world-renowned wine connoisseur comes on the heels of EU authorization allowing Ireland to attach an alcohol warning label that will advise about the negative effects of consuming wine, beer, and spirits. The announcement has provoked serious backlash and nine member countries have filed objections. The labels being planned would appear on all bottles regardless of their ABV and would be marked in all capital red letters, so as not to be missed – yet these warnings would not distinguish between moderate and excessive drinking, nor would they vary from wine to beer to spirit.
The Benefits of Wine
Maroni also added, “Wine lovers will surely be indifferent to the affixing of the warnings. It will certainly not be this novelty that will stop those who have always drunk it. Probably the measure will succeed in discouraging future consumption. A not insignificant fact considering that for young people wine, unlike spirits, is not trendy and more work should be done to make it well known and understood, without prejudice to the importance of moderation in consumption.”
According to scientific data, it is also important to remember the benefits of wine demonstrated by a multitude of investigations: wine, which has a volume proportion of only 12% alcohol, when drunk properly, helps prevent cardiovascular disease and is rich in antioxidants.
Correct Communication is the Only Solution
“Instead of stigmatizing wine, we need to communicate its benefits, and there is extensive literature on this that is never cited,” stresses Francesca Romana Maroni, CEO of Sens Eventi, “So events that continue to promote and describe the wine sector are essential, with special attention to niche realities, an expression of culture and territories of the Belpaese. In particular, insisting on the organization of tasting events, but also of taste itineraries, such as along the wine roads, and other wine tourism initiatives of which the peninsula is flourishing and which are strongly attractive in terms of participation even from abroad. For our part, we have been active for a number of years with our presence in Europe and beyond to raise awareness of Italy’s wine excellence.”
The “I Migliori Vini Italiani 2023” event was held from February 17th -19th, registering wide public participation with more than 4,000 attendees during the three days dedicated to wine culture, with the presence of 120 wineries, some of them celebrated by Luca Maroni in the XXXII edition of the Yearbook of the Best Italian Wines – Annuario dei Migliori Vini Italiani.
The fil rouge of the event was Ferment in all its facets, including educational workshops with sake and product tastings from Lazio, in-depth talks, show cooking, and meetings with experts such as chef Fabio Campoli. There were also a multitude of dinner events from “A Cena con I Migliori Vini Italiani 2023,”, with dishes created by Simone Loi paired with eight wines narrated by Luca Maroni himself.