Cork seals 95% of China’s top selling wines

Cork seals 95% of China’s top selling wines

As China is such a fast-growing consumer market for wines, one could easily jump to conclusion that the best-selling wines there have a broad spectrum in terms of vintages, grapes and wine regions. Yet according to a recent study, the absolute majority of these wines have a common attribute – using cork stopper as closure.

The study has researched the list of top 100 best-selling wines in terms of 2016 sales revenues in hypermarket chains* provided by the global performance management company Nielsen.  It was found that 95 out of these 100 wines used cork stopper as closure.  The study was completed in May 2017.

Pricing Comparison by Closure Type

“The findings clearly validate the Chinese wine consumer preference for cork and their willingness to spend as much as RMB 34.16 more on wines that feature such natural components in wine packaging, whether in domestic or imported wines, ” said Carlos de Jesus of Amorim and Operational Director of InterCork program of the Portuguese Cork Association (APCOR).

“It is also worth noticing that eight out of the nine Australian wines included in this research also used high-end cork stoppers.

“Wine is a popular gift for business or special occasions in China. Therefore people would prefer red wines because red is regarded as an auspicious color in Chinese culture. Consumers would also like to pick wines using cork stopper which are perceived as premium quality,” commented Carlos de Jesus.

Among the top 100 wines, 65 were produced by China wineries while the others were imported from France (23), Australia (9), US (1), Chile (1) and Spain (1).

Currently China is the market where the wine sector is focusing on in terms of production and consumption.  China has become the biggest market for some of the leading wine producing countries in the world.  Growth rates are higher than in any other market. With 847,000 ha of vineyards, China is now the 2nd largest wine-growing area in the world according to the International Organisation of Vine and Wine.

Baudouin Havaux, Chairman of the Concours Mondial de Bruxelles (CMB), recently announced that it is going to stage its highly acclaimed wine competition in China. He believed it is timely to focus on this major market which would be a trend-setter for the wine industry.

Echoed Carlos de Jesus, “The fact that the cork stopper is being highly regarded by Chinese wine consumers will make a tremendous impact on setting the market trend for closures amongst the international wine export countries.”