No UPC, reflective labels, odd shape boxes, super-slick finish on your wine box… Come on! As a retailer, I’m going to ask kindly that you refrain from any of the above! Let’s address each of these “problems” individually.
#1: No UPC on the bottle…
I’ve been told numerous reasons why a wine bottle doesn’t have a UPC. The usual excuses include cost of the UPC, the wine is not intended for retail sale, and a UPC makes the bottle ugly (my personal favorite).
As to the first complaint, I, honestly, do not have any idea what it costs to acquire a UPC. However, a quick Google turned up a few informative articles all referring to the quick, easy, and inexpensive UPC application. Seems like this just shouldn’t be the case and may be a quick way to dismiss uneducated folks without the need for a real explanation.
Maybe the second reason makes a little more sense. It must be that wineries like Fisher and Cakebread, or importers like Weygandt-Metzler, really have no desire to see their wines in a retail shop. I would be curious to see the quantity of these wines sold in a retail environment. I just don’t seem to understand this tactic, especially in today’s selling environment.
While the second reason seems more likely than the first, lets look at the third reason, it just doesn’t look good. I’m going to use the 2007 Fisher Unity (a great bottle of wine!) as the example for both sides of this argument. The Unity comes in a beautiful “painted” bottle. The graphic wraps around the entirety of the bottle with additional information on the back label. The effect is a stunning bottle that is fitting for the equally successful wine it contains. It is simply a shame they didn’t see it necessary to place a barcode on the bottle. The result? An insult to the design and intention of the label, a white & black blob spit out by some random POS software placed anywhere an opening on the glass permits. Want to see a UPC done right? Flip over a bottle of Frank Family wine the next time you get a chance. Simple, elegant, effective.
I would love to hear from a supplier, importer or winery on the subject. Why do you elect to not place a UPC on your product? Has anyone ever thought a bottle on their table to be ugly or look cheap because the label contained a UPC?