Empty football stadiums, no football practice for month on end – the corona pandemic has forced the eight national football teams of winemakers with more than 250 players to do without their favorite sport. Due to the current restrictions, a direct exchange cannot take place, and the UENFW European Championship in the Czech Republic, originally scheduled for 2020, has already been postponed to May 2022. “Football and wine are major European cultural assets”, explains Dr. Franz Josef Jung, Honorary President and former Federal Minister.
As football matches are still suspended and travel restrictions remain in place, the Country Presidents have decided to hold a conference instead, which enables the European players to engage in an active dialogue on viticulture and enology. As education is an integral part of cultural assets, the eight countries team up with renowned educational institutions. The German team has a close partnership with Hochschule Geisenheim University, which is also the current headquarter of the UENFW. Robert Lönarz, President of UENFW and the German team, has gladly taken up the idea of his committed colleagues and will present the hybrid event, consisting of live presentations and recordings from Geisenheim on July 02, 2021 between 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. He says: "I am pleased that we were able to put together a very exciting program with first-class speakers from eight countries.” The high quality of the conference is underlined by the patronage of the International Organization of Vine and Wine (OIV), whose Director General Pau Roca will deliver the welcome address. "The corona pandemic: impact on the European wine industry and future outlooks" is the main theme of the event, which can be accessed free of charge by all interested parties. The conference will be in English. For some presentations, subtitles in the respective national languages will be provided. In the spirit of a true European project, the preparatory work is equally divided between the different partners: the production of the media clips and presentations is currently taking place in the Czech Republic under the responsibility of Martin Chlad, who is also organizing the UENFW VINOEURO Czech Republic 2022. And the preparation of the "8 Nations Scholarship", a 16-week internship in eight countries, is organized by the Honorary Presidents Luigi Brunetti (Italy) and István Huszár (Hungary). In her presentation, the renowned wine scientist Prof. Dr. Monika Christmann will stress the importance of an international education in the wine sector, before the application portal of the scholarship is activated.
Although football matches are still suspended, there is a lot going on again among European winegrowers…
For further information and details on the program, please go to www.uenfw.org.