The Control Board Technical Service is responsible for activities as diverse as managing the registers of bodegas and vineyards, producing the grape grower's record books and monitoring wine production, inspecting bodegas and vineyards, monitoring the movement, ageing and marketing of wines, checking and monitoring back labels and, finally, producing statistics. Some of these activities are shared by more than one of the sections that make up the Technical Service.
Strict compliance with the Regulations of the Denominación de Origen Calificada Rioja requires the controlling and issuing of a considerable volume of documents each year, which is the task of the Board's Administrative Services. The most important documents are the export documents, authorisation for the transport of wines between registered bodegas and accompanying documents, processing of vintage control forms for the different types and categories of wines, issuing bodegas with the back labels and seals that guarantee the origin, quality, vintage and category of Rioja wines and authorisations for new labels.
The Administrative Services are also responsible for the financial management of the Board from winemaking and budget supervision, to accounting management, cash flow, and collection of the various types of taxes from grape growers and bodegas -which constitute the Board's income- and the corresponding expenditure.
The Control Board has a Legal Department that has been part of its organisational structure since 1986 and was incorporated into its Regulations in 1991. It is one of the few Control Boards to have its own permanent service of this nature, which gives an idea of the level of development that the Designation has achieved. Its work mainly involves processing administrative proceedings, both of a non-punitive nature -either instituted by any Department of the Control Board or at the request of the registered parties concerned- and of a punitive nature -instituted by decision of the Control Board either as a result of inspections by its overseers, by higher order or justified request from other bodies in the Public Administration, or arising from complaints.
In these cases, the Legal Department intervenes in the different stages of the proceedings and, finally, processes the payment of any penalties that may apply, which are paid into the Public Treasury. The Legal Department also draws up legal reports on different issues that affect the Designation and the Control Board, taking the necessary steps to defend the Designation before public authorities and in court and keeping an updated record of winemaking legislation.
The Marketing and Communications Department is responsible for the planning, co-ordination and management of the different promotional activities that the Control Board is involved in, in both the areas of publicity and of press and public relations. The department is responsible for planning and conducting publicity campaigns and promotional collaboration with the media, and for creating and carrying out various initiatives to promote Rioja wines, such as the Prestigio Rioja award, the presentation of new vintages, attending fairs, organising wine-tasting courses, collaborating with other bodies involved in promoting wine, and so on.
As an important part of the Board's communication strategy, permanent relations are maintained with the media through the Press Office, which issues more than one hundred press releases, reports and special joint publications every year, and deals on an individual basis with the many requests for information from the media and trade journalists.
The Marketing and Communications Department is also in charge of the Board's various publications (the CONSEJO newsletter, the annual report of activities, the web site and various promotional and informative materials, which are reedited and reprinted regularly due to high demand), managing the Rioja Wine Information Office, situated within the Board itself, and dealing with the many people, both Spanish and foreign, who visit the Board's headquarters daily. It also plans and co-ordinates market surveys and image surveys carried out by specialised companies, and distributes the results.