One of my dream jobs has always been to work in public relations and marketing in the wine industry. While so far that hasn’t come to pass, recently I’ve come into the next best thing. As director of communications and media relations for the Martin J. Whitman School of Management at Syracuse University, I am responsible for promoting the school. That includes promoting the faculty and the insightful, sometimes ground-breaking, research in which they are engaged. One of our faculty members, Professor Burak Kazaz, researches agricultural supply chain.
Somewhere along the way, Professor Kazaz began researching wine futures, or the sale of wine before it’s bottled. There is a healthy wine futures market in Europe but it has not yet caught on in the U.S. In 2015, Professor Kazaz released a first-of-its-kind pricing model for wine futures. He further demonstrated how small, artisanal wineries could benefit from selling a portion of their wines on the futures market. This week, he is releasing follow-on research that shows how wine distributors can also benefit from selling wine futures.
Through my engagement with promoting this research, I’ve learned a great deal about the wine industry that I never would have learned about otherwise. I’ve watched documentaries, read books and listened to Professor Kazaz share all he has learned about the wine industry, as well. It’s exhilarating for me as a wine lover and I’m so pleased to be able to marry my professional work with my personal hobby.
In the weeks to come, I hope to speak with reporters who cover the wine industry and connect with more people who research and discuss wine. In fact, one of the people I’m contacting is the author of the book I’m currently reading, Wine Wars, by the Wine Economist himself, Mike Veseth! Professor Kazaz’ research has the potential to change the U.S. wine industry. I am fortunate to be a part of that ground-breaking movement.