In times when the crisis threatens to cool international markets, China becomes ‘the’ opportunity for thousands of companies around the world.
In fact, in a context in which the main economies are limiting their growth rate, this country is betting on an 8.8% GDP growth rate in 2012.
Today, in the wine industry, to talk about China, is to talk about a sleeping giant that is awaking.
According to data provided by Wines of Argentina (WofA), the entity that brings together the main Argentine export wineries, “the Asian market is one of the most dynamic markets of the world” and China represents 86% of the region consumption and 10% of the world consumption.
Besides, while in 2011 global wine consumption fell almost 3%, in Asia this variable grew 14%.
Aware of the importance of this market for Argentine companies, WofA has just opened an office at the Argentine Embassy in Beijing.
In this context, Mario Giordano, Manager of WofA, explained “China is the seventh market for us. It represents 2% of total bottled wine exports”. He pointed out that “although this is not such a high figure, it is worth noting that during the first 11 months of 2011, this figure grew 55%. This is encouraging.”
Who rules in China?
According to a study conducted by Market Research & Technology for iProfesional.com, between January and November of last year, Argentine wineries exported 442 different ranges of wines, though the first 50 labels represent half of the total sales.
As it can be seen in the chart, the winery with the strongest presence is La Rural that took over three of the first five places with Rutini, Felipe Rutini, and Pequeña Vasija.
The great Chinese challenge
According to Giordano, the landing of national wines in the gigantic Asian country is “at an early stage. Except for those wineries that have made a good choice of importer, the rest are at an initial phase. Besides, China is a market not fully mature as far as consumption goes: less than 5 liters per inhabitant. This is why we have to educate the consumer about Argentina’s high-end wine production”.
In this sense, Wines of Argentina’s manager explained that the entity’s ‘advance’ in this region seeks to “get closer to the referents of this market in order to work on their knowledge of our country, wines, and regions. We have to make our presence felt”.