By Andy Young
Wine Australia has today released its Export Report, which shows that Australian wine exports have continued to experience strong growth in the 12 months up to the end of March 2016.
Over that time period the value of exports grew by 13 per cent, driven by bottled exports particularly at higher price points.
Wine Australia CEO Andreas Clark said: “It is very pleasing to see the increasing demand for premium Australian wines, particularly in Asia.
“Bottled wine exports grew by 16 per cent to $1.7 billion, the highest value in five years. There was growth in bottled exports at all price points, but growth was strongest at the higher end.
“Exports above $10 per litre increased 32 per cent to $492 million, which is a record level for exports in this segment. As the table below shows, exports in each of the price segments above $10 per litre experienced growth, ranging from 10 per cent to 56 per cent.
“Wines with an FOB of $50 per litre or higher now make up a third of all exports over $10 per litre for the first time,” he said.
Recent trade agreements in three key markets have also helped to produce solid growth. Exports to Japan increased by 10 per cent to $45m, with the value of wine exported above $10 per litre increasing by 34 per cent to $8.3m.
South Korea also saw significant increase with exports up by 51 per cent to $13m, which is the highest annual value since December 2008.
With regards to China, the free trade agreement there was in force for fewer than four months of the reported period, so Wine Australia said the full impact of the deal is yet to be realised. But regardless exports to mainland China grew by 64 per cent to $397m over the 12 months. Last week TheShout reported that Wine Australia’s general manager of marketing, Stuart Barclay, said China and Hong Kong is now the biggest market for Australian wine.
There has also been strong varietal growth in bottled wine exports with single varietal bottled exports growing by 14 per cent to $1.1bn. Where the variety appeared on the label, 72 per cent of these were single varietal wines.
The top five most exported varieties – Shiraz, Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, Shiraz/Cabernet Sauvignon blend and Merlot – account for 70 per cent of the value of varietal-labelled exports.
The United States remains the single biggest market by value for Australian wine, up by 4 per cent to $442m, but the huge growth in China has seen the value of that market increase, making it second biggest overall. The Hong Kong market also saw large growth, up 17 per cent to $129m, so when combined with the Chinese market they become number one.
The UK remains the biggest market by volume, but as much of that wine is shipped in bulk it has slipped behind China in terms of value. Canada is the fourth biggest market by value at $188m, which is up one per cent on the previous 12 months.
Last week Barclay also told TheShout that Wine Australia will be conducting a number of marketing activities throughout Asia to further build the profile of Australian wine.