The Chilean pavilion, covering 300 square meters, has spaces especially devoted to wine-tasting and talks that seek to inform the public about the characteristics of Chilean wines, an initiative that visitors have found very attractive.
Thus, Chilean products are making their presence felt at the 30th version of the prestigious event. On its first day more than 6,500 people attended the fair, among them buyers and representatives of distribution chains, hotels and restaurants from the United Kingdom and Europe in general. Chile’s participation at the fair is supported by ProChile, an organization in charge of promoting exports from this South American country. Sergio Seguel, ProChile’s Assistant National Director for Sectoral and Territorial Management, highlighted the important presence in the UK of representatives of Chilean vineyards, in spite of the disruptions caused by last February’s earthquake in the industry.
“This year, more than 40 Chilean vineyards are represented at the fair, which shows that in spite of the losses the sector sustained due to the earthquake, they are in a position to continue to gain market share”, indicated the official. Seguel also highlighted the importance of the UK market for Chilean wine varieties, in particular those with lower alcohol levels, organic wines and sustainably produced Carménère stock.
According to statistics issued by the Chilean authorities, last year the total value of wine sales in general on the UK market showed an average growth of 6%, while those of Chilean wines increased by 26%.
At present, wines produced in Chile have a 9.4% share of the retail market and specialized shops, and increases to 10.5% in hotels, restaurants and “uncorked wine” sales.
The presence of Chilean wines in the UK market is so relevant that recently the Concha y Toro vineyard became the official sponsor of Manchester United.
In parallel to its participation in the fair, Viña Alto Las Gredas, also supported by ProChile’s Trade Office in London, is prospecting the UK market for its premium chardonnay wine. This will include an intense agenda of meetings with importers and potential buyers, as well as with the specialized press.