This year, the National Association of Sommeliers in Montenegro organised the 8th Monte Vino Salon that is the most prestigious and most visited wine event in Montenegro. For the previous seven editions, it received a reputation as a significant event not only for locals but also for European wine lovers. Is that an opportunity to grow an industry that could stimulate the Montenegro economy?
Just in the United States of America, the wine business contributes 220 billion US dollars to the U.S. economy, while France manages to export over 10 billion euro to European countries. It points out a stunning potential for the wine industry and the reason why Montenegro should go for it. In 2015, EU Parliament voted for permission to accept the export of Montenegrin wines alla rinfusa, but it's not good if we want to make a brand of Montenegro wines.
Events like Monte Vino Salon are a great example of how wine lovers in Montenegro can organise such an important event that is branding Montenegro as a wine country in Europe. These events are the best way to see the progress of wineries in Montenegro, but also to raise awareness of wine culture in our country. Also, they are significant because they put small, local and family wineries into focus who can present their products to some of the most excellent sommeliers and oenologists in the world. Beside local wineries, there are also representatives from 15 countries who are coming to Montenegro to present their products. At the Monte Vino Salon 2018 event, over 565 products were introduced from the 35 most prestigious world distilleries.
So far, Plantaze 13. Jul is the strongest brand in Montenegro. Although, the major shareholder is the State with around 55% of total shares, in 2016 the profit was 2,3 million euro, and export was satisfactory. In 2015, about 1,2 million bottles were exported to the Russian Federation, but in 2017, the Russian Federation banned wines exported from Montenegro as the counter-measure to the sanctions of the Government of Montenegro.
Some progress with the wine industry in Montenegro is visible, and now more local wineries are going on the market. Danijela Radec from the National Association of Sommeliers in Montenegro said:
Our winemaking grows year after year, and our winemakers are increasingly following world trends, visiting salons in the region and the world.
It is a good signal. To be competitive on the global market, we need to recognise the need for it, learn more and have new experiences that will provide our winemakers with an opportunity to grow and produce better quality wine.