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Can China Sell Wine to India?

on 03/05/11 at 3:02 pm


China isn’t world-renowned for winemaking and India isn’t known as a nation of wine drinkers, yet these two markets are playing an increasingly prominent role in the industry.

As incomes increase and the middle class expands, wine is growing in popularity in both countries. According to a Vinexpo/International Wines and Spirits Record study, India will become the world’s tenth fastest growth nation for wine consumption between 2009 and 2013. Another study by Vinexpo shows that China’s wine consumption is likely to grow by 19.6% between 2010 and 2014, making it the sixth largest wine consumer in the world.

Can China’s winemakers tap this growth in India, or will Indian drinkers turn to the tried and trusted wines from places such as France and Italy and New World vineyards in California, South Africa, Australia, Chile and elsewhere?

China will find it difficult to knock these more established wine-making nations off their perch, but it is still pushing forward in India, making the most of 2011 being the “Year of China-India Exchange,” which was officially launched on April 13 by Chinese President Hu Jintao and Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

“Experience China – Sichuan Week in India”, which ended Saturday, was one of the events that kicked off the year of exchange. The event included a “Sichuan Wine and Cuisine Appreciation Conference” in New Delhi.

“We wanted to highlight China’s 2000-year history of wine producing. All this is an effort to further business and people to people exchanges between India and China,” a press officer at the Chinese embassy in New Delhi said.

One Indian trait – the love of experimenting – could favor the Chinese wine industry.

{Full story via WSJ}

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