Physical and online mix for London Wine Fair in 2021

The London Wine Fair has revealed details of how the event will operate in 2021 to adapt to the pandemic.

A physical event is still being planned at Olympia from May 17-19 with visitor numbers reduced from its 2019 level of 13,260 to 6,000.

There will be a ticket charge and pre-booked time slots, with applicants vetted to ensure that only serious buyers can attend.

The floorplan is being revamped to create more space and organisers say they are investing in technology to encourage pre-booked meetings.

The live event will operate simultaneously with “hybrid online content”, including masterclasses.

Information on use of glassware and spittoons will follow at a later date.

In an email to prospective exhibitors, the fair organisers said: “Our focus for 2021 is now on delivering a carefully-crafted event to a serious buying audience, with top-tier buyers from supermarkets, independent merchants, bars and restaurants, for three days of trading, education and discovery.”

Lockdown forced the cancellation of the 2020 event.