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14 consecutive years of growth for wine education at WSET

Published:  02 August, 2016

Demand for wine and spirit education continues to accelerate at the Wine and Spirit Education Trust (WSET), where a total of 72,171 exams were taken globally in the academic year finishing July 31, 2016.

This was an increase of 17% on last year, marking 14 consecutive years of growth for the trust.

WSET's global network also expanded, with courses now available in Bulgaria, Serbia, Peru, Israel and Latvia, bringing the total number of countries WSET courses are available in to 73.

The total number of approved course providers for the year reached 678.

Chief executive Ian Harris said: "Another year of strong growth is testament to the outstanding efforts of our staff, course providers and educators the world over. The wine and spirits industry continues to be a dynamic sector and we are committed to supporting its ongoing success through quality, fit-for-purpose education and training".

The UK remained the number one market for the academic year 2015/16, followed by Mainland china, the USA, Canada, Hong Kong and Qatar.

Overall candidate numbers were up 17% to 72,171, with UK candidates up 14% to 17,077.

Mainland China candidates were up 38% to 9,079 and Canada and the USA were both up 15% on last year.

Strong candidate numbers are just one of the successes WSET have celebrated in the Academic Year 2015/16.

Back in September, Victoria Burt, WSET research and development manager, became the third Master of Wine in the WSET team and in April, WSET diploma graduate, Julie Dupouy, placed third in the ASI world Sommelier Competition.

The WSET also unveiled a refreshed brand identity and Alumni programme followed by a website re-launch in May.

The new academic year commencing yesterday (August 1) will see the development of WSET's suite of qualifications with the introduction of the new WSET Level 1 Award in Sake, and substantial revamps to the WSET Level 3 Award in Wines, and the WSET Level 1 Award in Spirits.

Karen Douglas, WSET director of education said: "Continual development and improvement of our qualifications and teaching materials is imperative in ensuring students receive best-in-class education. These updates are a reflection of this ongoing commitment".