Barker, who was elected during the 21st OIV General Assembly held in Jerez de la Frontera (Spain) on 9 June 2023, made his first public appearance as Director General on 11 January in Dijon, at the OIV’s new year celebration 2024. In presence of OIV President Luigi Moio, representatives from the diplomatic corps, administrations and professionals from the vine and wine sector, John Barker said that it was a privilege to be taking the position of Director General in its 100thyear, and in the international year of vine and wine. He also shared his objectives for 2024 and his perspectives on the new strategic plan of the OIV (2025-2030) during his five-year term.
OIV's 100th anniversary and its new strategic plan
In 2024, the OIV is going to celebrate its 100th birthday. The centenary is an «opportunity to celebrate a century of achievements, to reinforce the commitment of members to the organisation, to raise the OIV’s profile and to look forward to the next 100 years and beyond – declared John Barker – The leadership and collaboration that the OIV provides are needed today more than ever, to help member countries to master the challenges and profit from the opportunities facing the vine and wine sector today».
Plus, major events will mark the organisation's life in 2024 besides its centenary celebration: the 45th World Congress of Vine and Wine, the renewal of its five-year strategic plan and the inauguration of the new headquarters at the Hôtel Bouchu d'Esterno in Dijon, France, in the Burgundy wine region.
Barker (pictured below, on the left) aims for the new strategic plan to set an ambitious agenda for the start of the OIV's second century, with a strong scientific focus on the elements that will determine the future of the vine and wine sector, such as climate change and sustainability. The new OIV Director General also discussed his aim to review the structures and processes of the OIV, in line with the expectations of members and the new strategic plan. Finally, he stressed his commitment to increasing memberships and expanding the recognition of the OIV among non-member countries, other international organisations and the vitivinicultural sector.
During the ceremony, the OIV President, Luigi Moio, payed tribute (above, on the right) to the former Director General Pau Roca, who sadly passed away at the end of 2023. Highlighting Roca’s contribution, devotion and passion for the vitivinicultural sector, Moio stressed: «The entire OIV family, the many scientific experts from 50 Countries, the ministerial delegations, all the OIV staff and all the friends of world wine who have had the good fortune to know him, I'm sure they'll remember Pau Roca with admiration and edification».