We love moving the Wine Tourism Conference each year so attendees can experience new and often booming wine tourism locations. Virginia, in this respect, is a perfect location.
In this October 4th press release from Virginia Governor McAuliffe, the following interesting facts are included:
- Sales of Virginia wine have increased by 26 percent since fiscal year 2010.
- Virginia currently ranks fifth in the number of wineries in the nation with more than 250. Virginia is also the nation’s fifth largest wine grape producer.
- The Virginia wine industry employs more than 4,700 people and contributes almost $750 million to the Virginia economy on an annual basis.
- More than 1.6 million tourists visited Virginia wineries in 2014.
What these statistics don’t tell you is how the wineries in Loudoun County are literally exploding with wine tourism. I visited multiple wineries when I last visited in August and the growth they were experiencing – primarily from sales of wine on location – was amazing.
It is a different animal from the incredibly successful and yet far more established wine areas in California and is a story that will be fun to hear during the November 18-20 conference.