What'll you have?
'Fashion thinking' relates to a system comprising many different structural elements that are all important to understand an industry sector. Just as fashion is more than clothes, so it is with wine. Professor Richard Mitchell has applied this way of thinking to the wine industry.
'Fashion thinking' takes into account the development over time of a social practice such as drinking. It also looks at an array of other factors that influence our drinking, such as the role of traditional and social media, wine awards, the licensing system, the development of terroir in New Zealand, wine growers, buyers for liquor stores and supermarkets, sommeliers, and the marketing of wine.
Taking this systemic approach enables researchers to examine the interaction between these various factors, which in combination are influencing changes in how New Zealanders buy and consume wine. For example, we have seen growth in cellar door sales and outdoor dining. Richard's research recommending this approach to wine is being published in a chapter of a new book, the Handbook of Wine and Culture.