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Brazil's wine sector eyes Chinese market for future development

Xinhua by Pablo Giuliano05/03/2019  

SAO PAULO, Feb. 26 (Xinhua) -- Brazilian wine producers have set their sights on gaining a larger share of China's consumer market.

To that end, the wine sector and government of the South American country have joined forces to develop a strategy that will help expand the distribution of their products, especially sparkling wines and grape juice.

"In Asia, our market is more directed at China, where we take part in four annual fairs, initially seeking distributors in Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou," said Diego Bertolini, manager of promotion at the Brazilian Wine Institute (Ibravin) based in Bento Goncalves, Brazil's leading wine-making region, in the southern state of Rio Grande do Sul.

One of the main goals of the producers and the state-run export promotion agency APEX is to boost their products' presence on Hema, a network of online and brick-and-mortar supermarkets operated by China's e-commerce giant Alibaba.

Brazil's wine industry, known for its sparkling wines, began with the arrival of Italian immigrants.

"The Miolo brand is a premium wine that is already in seven stores in China," said Bertolini, adding that another brand Aurora has employees in China and has invested in distribution of its products.

"The companies clearly know that they have to patiently build up a market in China," he said.

"China imports high-quality wines from many countries, but Brazil has distinct products for the Chinese palate, such as a sparkling Moscatel, aromatic, with 8 percent alcohol content and greater residual grape sugar," said Bertolini.

Organic grape juice producers in the country are also optimistic about exploring the Chinese market.

"Organic grape juice represents Brazil's tropical image and healthy eating. Brazilian grape juice doesn't have added water or preservatives," Bertolini said.

Brazil's exports to Asia go mainly to China, Japan and Singapore, according to the industry expert.