Vittorio Moretti will lead Franciacorta Consorzio for the next seven years

Vittorio Moretti will lead Franciacorta Consorzio for the next seven years

The governing body for the Franciacorta wine region has elected a new president, with incumbent Maurizio Zanella stepping down after seven years in the job.

Vittorio Moretti, owner of Bellavista and Contadi Castaldi, will replace Zanella as president, Franciacorta Consorzio said yesterday. Moretti will work under a new board, which was also elected.

Franciacorta Consorzio chooses a new board and president every seven years, and Zanella leaves the body after overseeing a 45% sales increase for Franciacorta wines in the past four years.

Zanella, who owns Ca' del Bosco, said: "Today Franciacorta is by far the leading premium Italian sparkling wine thanks to 25 years of commitment from our consorzio. While exports are not a large share of our current sales, they are posting double-digit growth."

Incoming president Moretti said he will continue work to develop the region's viniculture and oenological knowledge. "I also endeavour to continue Maurizio's incredible work in positioning Franciacorta as not only a sparkling wine, but a lifestyle choice," he said.

Franciacorta is in the middle of Italy's Lombardy region, one hour's drive from Milan. There are 115 producers within the Franciacorta consorzio.

According to the EU farmers' cooperative Copa-Cogeca last month, Europe's wine harvest this year is forecast to be up slightly, with the quality broadly expected to be good.