IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Log in (now much improved!) to save this paper

Having Customers Share The Perception Of Quality Differences - One Century Of Debates About Quality Assessments On The French Wine Market

Listed author(s):
  • Geneviève Teil

    (Indira Gandhi Institute of Development Research)

Registered author(s):

    The wine market is a pretty paradoxical research object for the economical and marketing studies. In France alone, every year, hundreds of thousands of new brand differentiated products are marketed. How can so many brands survive to any rationalization process? One could think this situation to be tied to a kind of French paradox, but the number of wine brands is also increasing in all wine producing countries whether old, like Spain or new as US. Furthermore whereas most of the market theories explain the existence of markets thanks to the happy meeting of a demand with a corresponding supply, how could we explain the growth of the so called quality wine market, where it is so difficult to find two drinkers, even to expert drinkers, agreeing about the quality of a wine, ruining therefore the possibility of existence of any demand. The wine market is an interesting field case that helps us revise some of our most widely shared hypothesis on the empirical functioning of the markets. Which are the market procedures sustaining the happy encounter between a drinker and a wine? Is it the wine quality? Is it its a good product signalisation? Are there social distinctive processes? Is it a general opacity of the market? Is it the good adjustment to the consumers taste? In order to disentangle this complicated question and explain how consumer-product agreements are managed in order to perform sales and, at a larger scale, a market, this communication will draw back the evolution of the wine market in France during the last century. During this period, faced with repeated crisis, the wine market actors did not stand without reaction. Next to the limitation of the production, the wine quality emerged as a major stake during all the 20th century. In order to help its recognition, it became first labelled with origin denomination labels. But soon, new difficulties led to reconsider the quality labels efficiency. During the period considered, each new crisis brought in the same way critics of the old measures and new solutions. So, difficulties after difficulties, ever larger collectives proposed and set up ever more adapted procedures for the marketing of the wines. So the 20th century has seen the coming out of a series of procedures aimed at facilitating the quality recognition of the wines. But step by step, the authors acknowledged as able to define quality were changing, such as quality itself, and new market organisations appeared. Nevertheless, far from sweeping away the old procedures, the new solutions cohabited with them making the wine market appear today as a complex multilayered sandwich of market procedures that fostered the development of a market of hundred of thousands of wine

    If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    Paper provided by East Asian Bureau of Economic Research in its series Microeconomics Working Papers with number 22401.

    in new window

    Date of creation: Jan 2007
    Handle: RePEc:eab:microe:22401
    Contact details of provider: Postal:
    JG Crawford Building #13, Asia Pacific School of Economics and Government, Australian National University, ACT 0200

    Web page:

    More information through EDIRC

    References listed on IDEAS
    Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

    in new window

    1. George A. Akerlof, 1970. "The Market for "Lemons": Quality Uncertainty and the Market Mechanism," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 84(3), pages 488-500.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

    When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eab:microe:22401. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Shiro Armstrong)

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

    If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.