The Old Vine Conference: a Global Movement

The Old Vine Conference: a Global Movement

WSG is proud be the first Educational Partner of The Old Vine Conference. Read more to find out how this dynamic non-profit organization is actively creating a global network of old-vine disciples while raising awareness through education. 

The economic and social relevance of old vines is real, but the structure of the global wine industry stacks the odds against the regenerative commercial viability of old vines. The result is that healthy old vineyards of cultural resonance and unique qualitative potential are lost because they can’t be made to pay. 

The Old Vine Conference is a non-profit organisation whose aim is to bring together a global network to create a new category for wine from heritage vineyards. The Old Vine Conference works to safeguard old vines of cultural and ecological value by connecting, educating and inspiring the global wine industry through conferences, research, partnerships, tastings and fieldtrips.

The Old Vine Conference field trip to Villa Bogdano in Veneto, Italy

Old vines are a beacon for talent, innovation and connection. The best old vines yield uniquely transcendent wines, incomparably rich in savour, symbolism, and heritage and the genetic material of ancient varieties, often retrieved from forgotten old vineyards, is proving vital in adapting to climate change. 

Research indicates that even highly engaged wine enthusiasts, and many wine professionals, are unaware of the value of and threat to old vines. Through an extensive annual campaign, and by partnering with visionary organisations like Wine Scholar Guild, The Old Vine Conference is able to educate the global wine community on the many challenges faced by old vines and heritage vineyards.

Since it was founded in 2021 The Old Vine Conference has gathered a worldwide following and contributed exponentially to the awareness, understanding and support of the global old vine movement. Conferences are the foundation on which the non-profit’s programme is built, recordings of all five so far can be found to watch on demand on their website. This bringing together of old vine pioneers on a global stage has been the start of many valuable collaborations including the digitalisation of The Old Vine Registry.

Old Vine Fetească Neagră at Galicea Mare in Romania

The Old Vine Registry is the world's most comprehensive database of living historic vineyard sites which started out as an excel spreadsheet by Jancis Robinson MW 15 years ago. In 2023 the database was digitalised by Alder Yarrow of and is now under the guardianship of The Old Vine Conference. The Old Vine Registry is a search-based tool that is free to use, free to upload data to and as of writing* is home to the records of 3,100 old vineyards** from 35 countries.

The Old Vine Conference is funded by a combination of sponsorship, trade, winery and individual membership, philanthropic donations and research grants which enable the organisation to grow and increase the impact of its work. One such research grant, funded by the IWSC, was awarded to the Heritage Vines of Turkey team lead by Umay Çeviker, who undertook and presented the findings of their research entitled ‘The Precarious Existence of Anatolian Old Vines: Karasakız Example’ at a trade and media event in London which you can watch here

Old vines on the north face of the Peñas Blancas Mountains in DO Jumilla, Spain

As well as being a founding member of Heritage Vines of Turkey, Umay Çeviker is one of nine Old Vine Conference Regional Ambassadors whose unparalleled network and expertise of old vines in their regions links and ameliorates the global old vine movement. It is thanks to them that regional chapters of The Old Vine Conference are emerging, like in Italy where 17 wineries have come together under the stewardship of Michele Shah to shine a spotlight on their old vine projects, old vine wines and the rich viticultural heritage of Italy.

To find out more about why old vines matter you can access a vast bank of old vine resources and links on You can uncover inspiring and informative old vine stories and conversations and explore why old vines and the transcendent wines they produce deserve and need you attention on The Old Vine Conference Podcast. For all the weekly news and happenings you can follow The Old Vine Conference on Instagram, signup to receive their quarterly newsletter or support their work by becoming an individual member.

Interested in learning more or becoming a member of The Old Vines Conference yourself? 

Belinda Stone: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 
Instagram: @ouroldvines 
LinkedIn: @TheOldVineConferenceLtd
Twitter: @ouroldvines  
Hashtags: #oldvines #heritagevineyards #oldvinewinereviews

*January 2024
**The Old Vine Conference uses the framework set by The Old Vine Project in South Africa and The Barossa Old Vine Charter which consider vineyards to be old from 35 years+

Learn more about Old Vines on WSG Studio with The Old Vines Conference co-founder.

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