Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Red card for red wine

The Wine Trails of Canandaigua Lake, Cayuga Lake, Keuka Lake, and Seneca Lake have deployed a new program called Safe Group Wine Tours, designed to minimize "inappropriate behavior" by unruly tour groups Currently there are more than 50 wineries that are participating in the program which was kicked off this summer. Borrowed from the sport of soccer, wineries along the upstate lakes will issue Yellow or Red cards to groups based on their on site behavior. Yellow Cards indicate the group has been warned to curtail their inappropriate behavior prior to visiting the next winery in their itinerary and Red Cards indicate the group will in all likelihood be banned from visiting any additional wineries for the rest of the day. Seems like a good idea but is it ultimately good or bad for business?

On the one hand, they have created a system by which they can begin to control those over zealous wine tasters who don't know when to say when. However on the other hand, they might give large groups another reason not to come out and visit their wineries. Maybe the real question lies in whether large groups generally purchase wine and gifts or are they simply out for a day of tasting and driving around the beautiful lakes? I'm sure the typical wineries up there see a wide variety of clients and as a whole feel this is a necessary step to resolve perhaps a growing problem. Let's just hope the red card doesn't slide tackle the wineries bottom line.

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