Wines & Vines Home
   
 
Welcome Guest
LOGIN |  CREATE ACCOUNT
 
ADVERTISEMENT
 
 
 
10.22.2013  
 

The New Chinese Wine Consumer

Chinese crackdown on corporate excess forces North American exporters to get creative

 
by Kate Lavin
 
 
Alternative text
 
U.S. wine represents just a small percent of the total wine imported into China. Source: DPI State Government of Victoria report.
Napa, Calif.—After years of targeting Chinese government officials and businessmen known to buy cases of imported wine for banquets and gifts, speakers at the Exporting Wine to China conference hosted Oct. 16 by The Seminar Group said it’s time for executives in the North American wine industry to consider marketing to affluent women in China’s urban centers.

Linsey Gallagher, vice president of international marketing for the San Francisco, Calif.-based Wine Institute (WI), said the Chinese government has made an effort to crack down on corporate excess and gifting, and WI has seen a slowdown in growth during the past six months as a result.

“Right now 19 million people can afford a bottle of imported wine in China,” Gallagher reports, and 45% of these consumers live in Shanghai.

Brady Ni of The Nielsen Co. flew in from Shanghai for the export seminar and reported that consumer confidence among Chinese is nearing a historic peak. “People are willing to spend,” he said, and the places they spend their money are changing. Ni told the audience that consumers in the city of 19 million do much of their shopping at nearby convenience stores, a shift from the popular hypermarkets.

As far as the female segment of the market, Ni said Diageo has spent a lot of money marketing its Bailey’s Irish Cream liqueur to attract urban women consumers, “And it has worked.” And while the tale of businessmen combining expensive red wine with Sprite seems to have gone by the wayside, Ni said the practice is alive and well with young, urban consumers, for whom it is common to down drinks quickly. Diluting the wine makes it last longer, and, he said, “They like the sparkles.”

Forced culture
Michael Parr, vice president of international sales for Wente Vineyards of Livermore, Calif., said that Chinese consumers’ interest in wine has grown significantly in recent years, “but their understanding of wine and wine’s role in western culture has not.

“It might be a long-term goal to have Chinese drink wine like we do in the western culture, but for now we should understand how/when they drink,” he said. Rather than encouraging the idea of drinking wine every night with dinner, Parr encourages marketing bottles to be opened for special occasions.

That said, it is not uncommon for women in China to drink a glass of red wine before bed for its perceived health benefits.

Raising awareness
Around 83% of the wine consumed in China is domestically produced, and of the wine that is imported, nearly 50% comes from France. It’s not that Chinese wine drinkers are biased against U.S. wines, Gallagher said, rather, many Chinese consumers have no idea that California produces wine at all. In 2012 the U.S. was the No. 6 producer of wine imports in China, but it represented less than 5% of the total wine imports by volume.

“Australia has made a real push in China recently. … We still find ourselves in a pack with the rest of the folks.” As far as regional awareness among serious wine consumers in China, Napa Valley and Sonoma are on the radar, but at nowhere near the same level as French winemaking regions.

Visiting the U.S.
According to Gallagher, Chinese tourists are expected to be the No. 1 international group visiting California by 2015. Until then, Michael T. McCune of Iconoculture said it is important to align your wine company with the image you are projecting. “What if someone came to the U.S. and tried to find your winery, and found out it was in a corporate office and tweeted that via their own micro blog?” McCune asked.

Weibo, the Chinese equivalent of Twitter, surpassed 400,000 users in 2012. The reach could be huge, McCune said, and executives in the United States could see the effects on profits and have no idea why it happened.

SHARE »
Close
 
Currently no comments posted for this article.
 
CURRENT NEWS INDEX »


 
Wines & Vines Home
 
866.453.9701 | 415.453.9700 | Fax: 415.453.2517
65 Mitchell Blvd., Ste. A San Rafael, CA 94903
info@winesandvines.com
Wine Industry Metrics
 
Off-Premise Sales » Month   12 Months  
September 2014 $575 million
5%
$7,743 million
6%
September 2013 $550 million $7,311 million
     
Direct-to-Consumer Shipments » Month   12 Months  
September 2014 $163 million
16%
$1,708 million
11%
September 2013 $141 million $1,538 million
     
Winery Job Index » Month   12 Months  
September 2014 166
14%
226
18%
September 2013 145 192
     
 
MORE » Released on 10.15.2014
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Practical Winery & Vineyard Library
 
Search the PWV archive »
 
 

FEATURES
 

Direct To Consumer
Wine Shipping Report
2014
 
Download full report »
 
 

CALENDAR
  • November 1-2
     
    A Wine & Food Affair
     
  • November 1-2
     
    Temecula Harvest Celebration Barrel Tasting
     
  • November 5
     
    Single Vineyard Night
     
  • November 5-6
     
    Southeastern United Wine & Grape Symposium
     
  • MORE »
 

READER COMMENTS
 
Article: What's Your Winery's IP Worth? »
 
If you would like more information on this seminar please visit The Seminar Group's website....
Reader: Danielle Bingham
 
Article: DtC Is Lifeblood of Wineries, Banker Says »
 
Seems like another locical option would be to have more small niche distrbutors. Consolidation of...
Reader: Guest
 
Article: Tasting Wine From PD-Resistant Grapes »
 
Congratulations Andy! Lots of grapebreeders and southern growers will be looking through the catalogs. i...
Reader: Guest
 
Article: The 'Sideways' Effect »
 
Thank you for this research that confirms what many thought about the pinot noir effect....
Reader: Guest
 
Article: Fine for Volunteer Labor Makes Wineries Wary »
 
This is so incredibly asinine. And my taxes go to help fund these over-reaches? No...
Reader: Philburtonj
 
 


Directory/Buyer's Guide — Your Wine Industry Marketplace
 
 
WINERY SEARCH
 
 
Advanced Search »
SUPPLIER SEARCH
   by Product
 by Company Name or Brand
 
Browse by Category »
2015 Directory/Buyer's Guide
The Wines & Vines Directory and Buyer's Guide
 
 
EXPANDED ONLINE SEARCH INCLUDED WITH PURCHASE
 
ORDER NOW »
 
LEARN MORE »
 
 
Wines & Vines Magazine
 
 
LEARN MORE »
 
SUBSCRIBE »
 
Digital Edition Now Available!
Wines & Vines Digital Edition Now Available
 
LEARN MORE »
 
ORDER NOW »
 
 
The Wines & Vines Online Marketing System
 
The Industry Standard winery marketing application
 
FREE LIVE DEMO »
 
VIEW VIDEO »
 
 
 
 
Latest Job Listings
 Ams Is Hiring
 Santa Rosa, CA
General Administration and
 Compliance Assistant/S...
 Sonoma County, CA
General Administration and
 Sales Support Administ...
 Novato, CA
General Administration and
 Ranch Leader 3 - Napa ...
 Healdsburg, CA
Vineyards
 Assistant Store Manage...
 New York, NY
DTC, Tasting Room and Retai
 Tasting Room Associate...
 Sebastopol, CA
DTC, Tasting Room and Retai
 Assistant Tasting Room...
 Healdsburg, CA
DTC, Tasting Room and Retai
 Jr. Network Administra...
 St. Helena, CA
General Administration and
 Tasting Room And Wine ...
 Sonoma County, CA
DTC, Tasting Room and Retai
 Tasting Room/Hospitali...
 Rutherford, CA
DTC, Tasting Room and Retai
 
More Job Listings >>
Follow Us On:
 
 





Home  |  About Us  |  Editors  |  Subscribe  |  Print Edition  |  Digital Edition

Advertise  |  Site Map  |  Contact Us  |  Privacy Policy
 
 
Copyright © 2001-2014 by Wine Communications Group, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
No material may be reproduced without written permission of the Publisher.
Wines&Vines does not assume any responsibility for any unsolicited manuscripts or materials.