Women Masters of Wine Smashing Wine’s Glass Ceiling

on 09/06/14 at 11:58 am

Wine

indexIn an industry historically dominated by men, women are increasingly smashing through wine’s glass ceiling with the number of female Master of Wine students now surpassing that of male hopefuls.

As reported by The Times, this year’s intake of Master of Wine students was made up of 171 women and 131 men.

Though women still have a way to go before the balance is redressed as 220 of the world’s 313 Masters of Wine are men, while just 93 are women.

While the London-based IMW has been open to both men and women since it was founded in 1953, the first woman to achieve the accolade of becoming a Master of Wine was Sarah Morphew Stephen MW in 1970.

“At school she wrote a letter to a prestigious producer in Portugal asking about a career. They wrote back and said, ‘No, we don’t think it’s a place for women’,” the IMW’s executive director, Penny Richards, told The Times.

Despite old fashioned attitudes persisting in the wine world, an increasing number of women are choosing to become sommeliers – an arena dominated by men.

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