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Masters and diplomas in wine and spirits

The Grandes Ecoles, like the universities, are beginning to take a very close interest in the wine and spirits sector. It is indeed a key area in France, alongside hotels and restaurants. Want to know more about the schools/universities that offer masters in wine? This article is made for you!

France comes first among the countries that enjoy great legitimacy in the field of wine and spirits. The latter is also experiencing rapid growth on a global scale, particularly thanks to emerging countries, and represents a high-potential employment sector. France is the world’s leading exporter with 33% of exports. However, the country has been losing market share for some years.

In an increasingly fragile global economy, wine remains an island of growth, with a global market volume of 5.3% between 2012 and 2016. Spirits reached 14% of sales and growth in this sector is three times greater than that of the wine sector. In terms of human resources, the wine and spirits sector represents 3.5 million jobs worldwide, including 1.5 million in the United States, 600,000 in France and 300,000 in China.

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Wine and spirits marketing: one-of-a-kind marketing

Wines and spirits form a very specific sector. It is defined differently by its consumers, their consumption habits, its commercialization and its marketing. We don’t market wine like we’re going to market other products. On the other hand, the wine regulations that exist in a large number of countries require a perfect mastery of these regulatory logics. explains Jéràme Gallo, director of the School of Wine and Spirits Business (BSB) at Studyrama.

According to a study by IWSR, in 2020 the wine market generally resisted the crisis better than expected. “Given the incredibly tough measures the industry has continued to face due to Covid-19, it is encouraging to see that alcoholic beverages in the 19 countries studied are expected to decline by only 8% in 2020, instead of double-digit losses initially forecast, […] and the total volume of alcoholic beverages is expected to return to 2019 levels by 2024 says Mark Meek, CEO of IWSR. As far as the spirits industry is concerned, this market is worth twice that of wine, or 300 billion dollars.

There are many students who wish to opt for training with a more modern approach and focused on wine and spirits. It is for this reason that the Grandes Ecoles have embarked on a course that develops a new approach to the growth and deployment of wines and champagnes to promote the customer experience.

What are the skills developed in the Master of Wine and Spirits? This type of training provides many skills on the value of the product, its marketing as well as the psychology and behavior of the customer. Marketing is also at the rendezvous with new modes of consumption and the deployment of e-commerce. At the end of this training, students will be able to integrate a sector in full transformation. Wine is a prestigious product that requires a renewal of practices with different modes of consumption.

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In order to allow students who are passionate about the wine and spirits sector to access professions that are close to their hearts, many training courses are offered in these sectors. They have to file their application file according to licenses in several fields of the humanities and social sciences. Below are the licenses or bachelors eligible for this training at the faculty:

  • AES license
  • Management license
  • Bachelor’s degree in Economics
  • Bachelor’s degreeEconomics and Management
  • Bachelor’s degreeEconomy and Society
  • Business License
  • International trade license
  • Bachelor Wine Trade and Marketing
  • Bachelor International Trade
  • Bachelor Commerce

It is also possible to follow this kind of training in Grandes Ecoles, or even in a business or engineering school.

Read also: Mary-Lou (NEOMA) tells us about her certification in oenology!

Professions and opportunities after a master’s degree in wine and spirits

At the end of the master’s level training in wine and spirits, many options are available to the student. He can turn to the job of marketing director, product manager in wine or even export sales director for the wine industry. He also has the possibility of becoming business development managerdirector of international sales in the wine sector.

Other examples of professions and opportunities after a master’s in wine and spirits:

Schools/universities offering a master’s degree in wines and spirits

IAE Bordeaux

To respond to the profound changes in the wine sector, the IAE of Bordeaux offers training at three levels of analysis: the internationalization of the product-market couple, the emergence of new distribution methods, notoriety and importance of Bordeaux wines. Students will be able, at the end of this training, to respond to the challenges of this sector and to adapt to the different trends that are taking hold.

The KEDGE business school offers a Specialized Masters in Wines & Spirits Management. It is given in Bordeaux and aims to train future managers of the wine industry in France. On leaving, 80% of students are hired by their host company.

Montpellier Management

The University of Montpellier and the Montpellier SupAgro Institute for Advanced Vine and Wine Studies have worked together to launch the Master in Wine Tradespecializing in the study of the wine sector and professionals in the regional and national wine sector.

The objective of this master in wine is to acquire solid knowledge in the world of management and strategic and operational marketing, sales and negotiation, and customer relationship management. These courses are supplemented by introductory courses in wine-growing institutions and wine economics. The selection for this master is based on academic excellence, the professional project and the level of English. Candidates are recruited on the basis of a file and after an interview with a jury.


BSB launched, almost thirty years ago, the specialized master’s degree (MS) in international trade in wines and spirits (CIVS). In 2013, the school officially launched the SWSB, the School of Wine & Spirit Business, a subsidiary that brings together all of its training and research activities exclusively devoted to wine management. The school offers quality training in e-marketing, marketing, finance, strategy in the field of wines and spirits. The business school has also forged close relationships with renowned companies in the sector and universities in California, South Africa, Australia, Germany, Austria, Italy and Spain.

OMNES Education

OMNES Education aimed to strengthen its activities on four main pillars: luxury, hospitality and the art of living; wines and spirits and digital. The group had announced these objectives on the occasion of its 40th anniversary.

The group’s schools offer bachelor’s (bac+3) and MBA (bac+5) courses in commerce, marketing and management. The MBA Spirits marketing and management is dedicated to the field of spirits. The courses are given on the Bordeaux and London campuses and give students the chance to become specialists in the spirits industry, based in particular on courses in brand strategy, international negotiation, law and regulations, but also communication and web.

TBS Education

TBS Education launched training in 2010 on the management and marketing of wine within its Bachelor program in management (bac+3). The business school has launched other continuing education courses dedicated to wine.

AgroSup Dijon

AgroSup Dijon launched, in 2007, the specialized master (MS) Knowledge and international trade of wines (CCIV). It aims to train “expert wine salespeople capable of sharing the complexity of wine, knowing its markets, its qualities, its culture, the pleasure and the passion it provides”.

Bordeaux Sciences Agro

Bordeaux Sciences Agro offers a specialized master’s degree (MS) Manager of wine estates which aims to develop the skills necessary for the management of a wine estate. It is intended for professionals who need to take refresher training if they do not master the sector. The school also hosts a master of business and science in wineyard and winery intended for bac+3 scientists or in business and management, but also a Vine and Wine Master’s degree offered jointly with Montpellier Supagro and a European Vinifera Master’s (European master’s degree in viticulture and oenology) which target holders of bac+3 or bac+4 in science, agronomy, oenology or viticulture. In addition, the school has opened a training course dedicated to Cognac.

ESA Angers

The ESA of Angers, school of agriculture, agri-food and environment, offers, at the end of the engineering course, a major “vine and wine: sustainable production and international markets”. It associates the production sector with the economic and commercial dimension of the wine sector.

Ranking of the best Masters in Wine and Spirits

Studies Advisor has established a ranking of the best master’s degrees in wine and spirits based on student reviews.

Rank Master School Note
1 MS CIVS – International Trade in Wines and Spirits
BSB – Burgundy School of Business
BSB 8.45

MSc Wine & Hospitality Management
KEDGE Business School

KEDGE 8.31
3 MVS Specialized Master in Wines & Spirits Management
KEDGE Business School
KEDGE Business School 7.7
4 Master’s Degree in Culinary Leadership and Innovation Paul Bocuse Institute 7.61
5 Master Wines and Champagne University of Reims Champagne-Ardenne 7.58
6 Ms Management of Gastronomy and ¼nology
Storytelling School
Storytelling School 7.49
7 Specialized MBA Communication & Marketing of Wines and Spirits EFAP 7.44
8 MSc MVS Wine & Spirits Management KEDGE Business School 7.36
9 Master of Science Vineyard and Winery Management Bordeaux Sciences Agro 7.29

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