AUSTRALIA WAS NAMED WINE COUNTRY OF THE YEAR BY THE CHINESE WINE TRADE
By David Ma
Australia was crowned Wine Country of the Year by China’s wine and spirits industry on Monday in the China High-End Spirits Fair cum Global Wine G50 Summit held in the eastern Chinese city of Hangzhou.
Attended by 144 producers and over 1500 wine merchants, the event also featured forum discussions and wine tastings showcasing over 2000 wine and spirit products.
Eleven annual awards were presented in the ceremony to praise those companies in the Chinese wine trade that have performed well in the past year.
Australia was named Wine Country of the Year by the Chinese wine professionals who took part in the selection process.
Having seen wine export to China increased by 24% to AUD1.6 billion in the year ended 30 September, Australia is undoubtedly the star performer in riding the speedy growth in China’s wine consumption.
David Lucas, North Asia Regional General Manager of Wine Australia, said China’s Australian wine import has grown very fast in recent years, at about 30% per annum compared to the 20% increase across-the-board.
He said Wine Australia will not be complacent, looking ahead they will crank up their promotional efforts in second- third- and lower-tier cities, with special focus on central and western parts of China.
Monday’s event also named Castle Li Shiyi Personality of the Year. Li is Deputy General Manager of China National Cereals, Oils and Foodstuffs Corporation (COFCO) which is the state-owned food stuff conglomerate of China.
He is also General Manager of the Great Wall Winery as well as Wine & Wine International, the wine importing arm COFCO.
(the writer can be contacted at: DavidMa@thewinechronicle.com)