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On the ground at Vinexpo Asia: Highlights from Day Two

drinkstrade.com.au by Cody Profaca30/05/2024  

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Day two at Vinexpo Asia was notably calmer than the first. Or as Vinexposium’s CEO Rodolphe Lameyse put it, “yesterday, to translate the number of people, we were short in number of glasses… It’s a bit frustrating for some people, but for us it means that, wow, the crowd is huge.”

Today’s proceedings kicked off with a panel discussion exploring the future of China’s wine market. 

One of the panel members was Dan Siebers, Co-Partner of Waiju China, China’s largest wine importer by volume: “Obviously, we all know it’s a challenging market, it always has been a challenging market,” he said. 

“Often people will say that the long experience in the China market is not so easy to get, but the market of 10 years ago does not exist today. The market of five years ago barely resembles [today]. It’s a rapidly evolving market.

“Right now we’re going through another stage of transition and change, but certainly the long-term future is still very bright. I think now we can say it’s a revolution coming on in China, because really we are from an old generation to a new generation.” 

According to Don St Pierre, Co-Founder of ASC Fine Wines and AdaptEdge, part of the problem of understanding China’s wine market comes down to it currently being “more difficult to get data on what’s happening in China than what it was ten years ago.”

The third panel member was e-commerce expert and social media personality Xiao Pi, who outlined the growing influence of social media on wine consumption habits in China. 

More of the insights into the Chinese market outlined by these experts will be published soon. For the panel’s direct advice to Australian producers in the wake of the recently lifted tariffs, view this Drinks Trade article.

The Insights into the Future of China’s Wine Market panel discussion formed part of Vinexpo’s Academy program, which today also included a panel discussion into how wine clubs are changing global drinking habits, a saké and food pairing masterclass, a guide to unlocking the Korean wine market, and various regional deep dives.

Australian Wine also hosted five masterclasses throughout the day: Great Southern gems, Discover Yarra Valley Chardonnay, Australia’s First Families of Wine, Riverland uprising, and Australia’s age-worthy wines.

Today’s proceedings ended with the CEO of Vinexposium Rodolphe Lameyse addressing the various global media teams reporting from the event.

“We are absolutely delighted about the turnout of the show,” he said.

“As you can imagine, it’s always a bit of a question mark when you are away for six years.

“We are turning people into wine lovers. Because wine is about love. Coming back to Hong Kong, it’s all romance.”