The East Sussex college now offers degrees in wine business and production, in partnership with the University of Brighton. The first courses started in 1996, and the college now has a 25 acre vineyard, a wine centre with a commercial winery and research centre and an international staff team leading courses for about 130 full time students.
The three themes in the new course are the wine trade, wines of the world, and business management. Students will learn about the key wine regions of the world, and take specialist modules covering areas such as sparkling wine, wine distribution channels, wine sensory evaluation, and consumer behaviour, as well as developing their skills in financial management, marketing and business planning.
A number of course modules correspond to the Wine and Spirit Education Trust (WSET) level three and level four qualifications, which will allow students to take the WSET diploma as an additional qualification. Students will also take part in commercial grape growing and wine making on the college estate. Plumpton wine department also has strong links with the London wine trade, and there will be chances to go on study trips to wine producing areas such as Bordeaux, Montpellier and Champagne.