Yes, folks, it really was a hoax. We should have known that a machine claiming to turn water into wine was too good to be true. Saying that, why was the hoax ever put about?
Well, Ideal Wine Company blog readers, it was actually not so much a hoax, as a PR stunt. The stunt was performed in aid of the work of charity Wine to Water, an interesting project you just have to hear about.
We can see why they chose this kind of hoax. The Miracle Machine claimed to turn water; with the help of a few ingredients, such as yeast and grape concentrate, into wine, in just three days. Considering how popular wine is all over the world, as well as the tenacity of the original ‘water into wine’ story on society’s collective imagination, we can see why it proved a good PR stunt.
In reality, of course, it absolutely wasn’t possible – and even if it could have been, you wouldn’t have gotten quality luxury wine like those featured on the Ideal Wine Company product list – but it really did prove popular. It generated a tonne of press. But what was it actually promoting?
Wine to Water is a charity that seeks to address the world-wide water crisis. We need water to live, our bodies can’t go without it, and yet poor sanitation, according to the charity, affects 2.5 billion people internationally and deprives them of a clean water source.
Therefore the Wine to Water Movement is a concerted effort to bring clean water and sanitation to those 2.5 billion people. Their work includes carrying out repair work on broken wells, installing sustainable rain water harvest tanks and providing sanitation solutions. It’s essential work.
On their site, the charity have apologised for their hoax with a statement and explained why they did it. The statement said that: ‘The Miracle Machine has generated enormous interest around the globe. We and supporters Kevin Boyer and Philip James are sorry to disappoint anyone who was looking forward to high quality wine in 3 days.’
It went onto elaborate on why the hoax had taken place, explaining that: ‘For the cost of a bottle of fine wine, we provide a way to produce 99.9% pure drinking water to a family for up to five years and THAT is the true miracle.’
It certainly is, but it also illustrates the strength that wine has on the human imagination. It was a powerful promotional tool used to highlight the work of this noble charity. That can never be a bad thing.