In an upcoming article in the Weekend Australian I write about the Japanese market, but point to the dilemma confronting the Australian wine industry as a whole if it has to take marketing dollars out of other countries (notably Japan) to fund a push into China. Well, Wine Australia has announced a multi-million-dollar assault on the Chinese market with the launch of brand ‘A+’ at Australia’s Shanghai Expo pavilion. Wine Australia will set up offices in Beijing, Shanghai and Hong Kong, with the expectation that the Chinese market will become its biggest customer by 2015.
I have to say that for the better part of 10 years I have been talking about China and the near-certainty that it would become Australia’s major wine market, but said it was extremely difficult to tell when this would come about – in 10, 15 or 20 years (or more) time. Well, now 2015 has been nominated, and it would not surprise me if we do achieve that success by that time. The hidden question is where the supply will come from. More specifically, will we come to regret the strong moves to reduce production. It’s a fast-moving world.
Finally, I should perhaps explain that I missed the original press release A+ Australian Wine while I was in France.