This week we are joined by Valentina Dalle Mule, Export Area Manager Airlines at Bottega S.p.A. As a producer of high-quality proseccos available on airlines around the world, known for their distinctive gold bottles, they have experienced the challenges of 2020 first hand. Read on to find out how Bottega S.p.A. has responded:
What became the top priority for you and your business once COVID-19 started to spread and lockdowns were introduced?
The Coronavirus pandemic is an epochal event that involves the whole world, all companies, all sectors. Bottega company dedicated every commitment to conscientiously follow the directives of the Italian Government and the World Health Organization for the protection of its workers. In this context, production continued regularly thanks to the goodwill of everyone.
We would like to emphasize that in the food and beverage sector, the Italian legislation is by far the most rigorous. The quality and health checks of the products are carried out by public authorities. We have a production system made up of medium and medium-small partners enabling us to maintain an artisan relationship with the product in compliance with strict hygiene rules.
Did your business transition to working from home and have you started to return to the office, or are planning to before the end of 2020?
In the months of March, April and May, a large number of our employees worked remotely, staying at home. However, production never stopped and some of the employees dedicated to these functions worked throughout in full compliance with the regulations and safeguarding of health.
With the beginning of the summer we returned partially to work in the office, scrupulously respecting every prescription to prevent the risk of contagion. In the near future we will see in accordance of the evolution of the situation.
How have your conversations with customers changed in light of the COVID pandemic and did new business opportunities or ideas arise during this time?
We try to do our best, offering the customers our cooperation and promoting our brands and products in all markets, especially online. We focus on regular video calls to keep in contact with our customers. The main focus lies in trust, the real key to overcoming this difficult moment and gradually returning to a normal life for both companies and people.
Excitingly, our new Prosecco Rosè will be on the market in Europe from mid-November which will be an interesting opportunity. The new sparkling wine, which maintains the freshness and versatility of Prosecco, is produced with a blend of Glera (85%) and Pinot Noir (15%). The grapes of the well-known international vine contribute to give this Prosecco its characteristic pink color and greater aromatic complexity. In the time of a pandemic the innovative rosé version, which has been discussed for some years now, represents an important novelty for the world of Prosecco Doc and sparkling wines.
What do you think is the key priority for the onboard services market and what impact do you feel COVID will have on the onboard services supply chain over the coming years?
I believe that the key priority for the onboard service is to keep the service active and be able to offer a range of F&B, respecting every prescription to prevent the risk of contagion in order to grant to the customer a good experience onboard. Single-serve for alcohol and food I believe will be the new normal.
While travelling, people wish to treat themselves on board and the Airline has to be able to meet their needs. For example, people should be able to download the menu through a QR code but also a printed menu covered with plastic, easy to clean, should be available on board. On the duty free side, I have seen that a lot of Airlines have created their own ‘shop in shop’ page where they are able to offer an extended range of products for both pre-order and home delivery.
- Cabin Catch Up: Wilbert de Louw, CEO, Foodcase
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- Cabin Catch Up: Valentina Dalle Mule, Bottega S.p.A.
What did you miss by not being at WTCE this year and what are you looking forward to at next year’s show?
For Bottega, WTCE represents the one and only tradeshow dedicated exclusively to the Airlines business. During the past year, we have never stopped working on new products but we only had the chance to show them to the buyers virtually and not being able to present them properly and have a guided tasting, as we normally do when we launch new products into the market. We also missed the chance to meet some of the buyers that we normally meet only in WTCE.
While much of the world is experiencing the second wave of Covid-19 and borders are still closed between countries, the short-term outlook for the onboard service industry remains uncertain. We are confident that by September 2021 we will be able to achieve our aim, meet our buyers from all over the world in Hamburg and finally give the airlines opportunity to sample our exciting new Prosecco Rosè. WTCE is a key platform for Bottega in reaching our marketing goals and we definitely want to be able to get the most out of it.
Meet Bottega S.p.A. at WTCE 2021
You’ll be able to meet Bottega S.p.A. at WTCE 2021 on stand 1D10. For more information about the products they provide, visit their website.
Would you like to be featured in our Cabin Catch Up series? Simply get in touch with the WTCE team.