Wines of Chile has unveiled its strategy for Chile to become the number one producer of premium and diverse wines outside traditional growing regions in Europe by 2020.
The promotional organization, which represents 95 percent of Chile’s wine industry, has a goal of doubling sales to US$3 billion through a three percent average increase in price and a six percent increase in volume growth over the next 10 years.
The 2020 strategy incorporates small and large growers, suppliers, exporters and national vineyards behind a common goal of reinforcing Chile’s wine image and positioning it in the world-class category, while also strengthening the image of Chile.
Because of its diverse and varied grapes from each of the country’s regions – particularly its trademark Carmenere grape – Chile and wine are already inextricably linked. According to Wines of Chile, wine represents 2.6 percent of the country’s total exports, totaling around US$1.5 billion annually.
The goal now is to educate consumers around the world about the quality of those wines, said Juan Somavía, managing director of Wines of Chile.
“We are very confident we have achieved a level of development within the industry in terms of quality,” said Mr Somavía.
He said development of the country’s terroirs and varietals, along with its advances of state-of-the-art technology, had allowed the country “to produce many high quality wines, from many different regions and in many different styles, that really fit today’s consumer preferences.
“The major challenge is a marketing challenge to be able to differentiate the diversity and quality of Chilean wines,” he added. The organization is aiming to position Chilean premium wines in a retail sales range of between 10 and 25 dollars.
It also plans to expand its presence in the major markets of Asia, Brazil and Scandinavia while strengthening its position in the traditional markets of the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom.
Promotional campaigns are being rolled out, such as one for the UK market that highlights how a glass of Carmenere pairs perfectly with spicy foods, especially curry. Sales of Chilean wine have already been doing well there, as well as in India. Market share amongst Indian wine consumers has grown gradually from the sixth largest supplier in 2004 to the fourth largest in 2008, with nearly 5 percent of the market share.
A large part of the promotion campaign is familiarizing consumers with Chile as a country, Mr Somavía said. So it is important to show off the country’s food culture, festivals and tourist opportunities that can be tied in with wine tours.
“The country’s great diversity allows us to produce a great number of style and types of wines,” he said. “Also, for tourism purposes Chile is a very diverse country. There are many parallels between the strengths of the country and its geography, and the strength of Chile as a wine category.”
In parallel to this 2020 strategy, the industry is developing a new Sustainablity Code that will evaluate the three major areas of sustainability in wine production: concern for the environment, social responsibility and economic viability.
“We really think the sustainability certification process will help communicate to consumers and to the trade what Chilean wine stands for, and also help differentiate Chile from other wines that are less active in this area,” Mr Somavía said.