Pub and bar owners have been urged to train staff to recognise the difference between a Pinot Grigio and Rioja to make the most of a predicted wine sales boom post smoking ban.
According to management consultancy company Aon's Vine to Wine report, pub operators in other countries with bans in place that have increased staff training around drink knowledge have enjoyed a more motivated workforce and a sales boost.
Liam Dolan, principal consultant at Aon HR Solutions, said: "Countries such as Italy and Ireland have benefited by catering for the new audience of increasingly sophisticated wine drinkers."
Dolan said that as a consequence of an increasingly sophisticated consumer market customers will increasingly expect better knowledge from bar staff of the drinks they serve.
The report also cites research by AC Nielsen which says since the smoking ban was introduced in Scotland back in March 2006 wine sales in pubs are 8% up year-on-year.
Aon's report advises employers to offer wine tasting courses to employees, offer training booklets and partner new recruits with more experienced staff so they can learn on the job.
By Christopher Walton
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