“New Zealand wine is maturing: starting from a small and rigid market, it has distinguished itself as a successful wine producing and exporting country, but at the same time, in the last decade, it has recorded a decline in imports. Only exception? Italian wine, significantly increasing. The latter, despite being very different in terms of style from the local ones, has in fact gained popularity among New Zealand consumers and its presence on the market has constantly grown in quantity and value”.

This country has a population of around 5.1 million and is mainly concentrated in large urban areas, such as Auckland. In recent years, New Zealand has increasingly established itself as a wine producing and exporting country; in fact, this has approximately 42 thousand hectares of vineyards – representing 1% of the world’s vineyards – and is the sixth largest exporter of wine in the world, with a value of approximately 2.4 billion New Zealand dollars. Sauvignon Blanc represents 75% of New Zealand’s total production. The main target markets are the USA, UK and Australia (representing 85%).

New Zealand consumers prefer to drink white wines, which represent 47% of consumption; red wines for 30% and sparkling wines for 11%. The latter, however, are recording a very significant growth rate, which stands at around 23%. Going more into the specifics of the preferences of the Kiwi population, they prefer premium wines ($15-20), followed by the standard range ($10-15) and the super premium ($20-30).

“Imported wine corresponds to 34% of the wine consumed. Most of it, not surprisingly, goes to white wines which are also increasing (from 42% in 2014, to the current 49%) with Spain in the lead, as are the sparkling ones”. The wine category that is growing the most, however, is Italian wine: approximately 2.7 million liters are imported for a total value of 25 million New Zealand dollars. Sparkling wines lead the way with 1.5 million litres, followed by reds (0.9 million litres) and finally whites (0.3 million litres).

For Italian wines there are still many opportunities to be exploited and space to include white and red wines, but it is necessary to take costs, regulations and timing into consideration given the distance between our country and New Zealand. Furthermore, it is essential to present yourself prepared and with good arguments to conquer the New Zealand palate.

Source: Wine News

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