The countryside is opening its doors, after the financial and psychological trauma of lockdown.
Some vineyards are again offering tours and other events and, while the effects of Covid-19 will be felt for many years, there is still cause for optimism in the medium and long term.
The pandemic will speed the trend towards the “staycation”, increasing the public’s desire to holiday and spend leisure time in the British countryside. This is tied in with the nation’s growing appreciation of the natural environment and the physical and mental benefits that time outdoors can bring.
As ‘customers’ seek out new experiences, viticulture businesses are well placed to tap into this demand, through accommodation, hospitality and events.
This is ironic as businesses that relied heavily on such visitor-based income have been hit badly by the coronavirus restrictions, but this will still prove to be a key revenue source for vineyards in the future.
If we’ve learnt one thing from these last terrible few months, it’s that operations with multiple, diverse income streams are more resilient – having a reduced exposure to risk, as well as more opportunities for profit.
Having the right buildings is a requirement for many of these enterprises, so vineyards with the right infrastructure will be at an advantage.
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Article by Matthew Berryman Open PDF