MILAN, May 8 (Class Editori) -- The Italian wine sector is aiming at been the first to resume in China. "We hope that next autumn, Italy will be the first to restart exactly in China, where the lockdown on the wine on-trade began, giving rise to a domino effect", the general director of Veronafiere, Giovanni Mantovani, has underlined. Vinitaly has been postponed to next year; the agenda in China is, instead, full of events.
The first edition of Wine to Asia in Shenzhen has been scheduled (November, 9-11), as well as the other events of Vinitaly Hong Kong (November, 5-7), and Chengdu.
March has represented the watershed for the global wine trade; Italy played the main role, recording positive results in the first 2 months of 2020 but it had then to beat a retreat in March, when the stocks due to the US duties ran out and the lockdown because of coronavirus started; this has been disclosed by the data of the Vinitaly-Nomisma Wine Monitor on the wine sales in the extra-EU countries in the first quarter of 2020.
Generally speaking, the data processing on a customs basis has revealed a global trend with two sides among global buyers. On the one hand, the USA in view of the increase in additional duties have precautionary bought up products and closed the quarter with the worldwide imports amounting at +10.9%; on the other side, China has recorded a decrease in imports by 20% compared to the same period in 2019 due to the health emergency.
However, Italy has lost less in China (-13.3%) and has earned more in the USA (+16.8%). As for competitors, if the off-trade is strongly competitive against Australian, Chilean or American wines, France, the market leader,seemed to manage the situation with more difficulties compared to Italy, due to the increased difficulties in China (-37.2% in the quarter), the strong loss in Switzerland (-24.6%) and the negative result in Japan. Thanks to sparkling wines, it went well in the USA instead, where the fear of duties up to 100% has increased Champagne exports to +93%.
In addition, the analysis shows a difficulty for higher quality wines, which seemed to suffer mostly from the negative variation in March: in Switzerland, the food service lockdown has led to a decrease in the average import price by 14.6% compared to the same month of last year, when a drop by 10.5% in the USA, 9.5% in China and 11.5% in Norway was recorded. A downward trend, as observed also in the Italian large-scale distribution with the recent analysis set by Vinitaly, which leads to a growing number of medium-law quality wines on the shelves, but a progressive reshaping of the average value per bottle.
(Source: Class Editori)
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