Austrade stages "virtual" trade mission

The Australian Trade Commission (Austrade) has used videoconferencing to stage a virtual trade mission for wine exporters.

Australian wineries have staged an online tasting session with potential Scandinavian wine importers at an event dubbed a “virtual trade mission” and a “tele-tasting” by Austrade staff.

The event saw Australian wines pre-shipped to Scandinavia, where tasters sampled the products during a video conference that featured winery representatives explaining the wines.

Trade missions typically involve exporters visiting another nation to meet potential buyers, but Austrade’s Leith Doody, the organisation’s State Manger for Victoria and Tasmania said the high cost of travel makes virtual missions more attractive in the current economic climate.

Virtual trade missions are also being used to reach markets where the security situation makes exporters uncomfortable about physical visits.

“Exporters are happy to come in and do a session like this at 9:00PM,” Doody says, as it is more convenient to do so than it is to travel overseas.

The tele-tasting was, however, followed up by an actual trade mission to Scandinavia.

“Trade missions still work very well,” Doody said. “One-to-one meetings are very valuable for exporters.”

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