China’s wine market may have slumped in 2013 thanks to China’s ongoing anti-corruption campaign, but its growth over the past several years has been staggering. A new study recently released reveals just how rapidly the market has ascended, finding that the number of “expensive” bottles more than quadrupled over the previous five years.
The South China Morning Post recently reported that the consumption of wine priced at US$10 a bottle or more surged by 430 percent from 2008 to 2012 in China and Hong Kong, according to a new report by Vinexpo. Furthermore, Chinese consumers are now only second to those in the United States for “willingness” to spend more than $10 on a bottle. The report also finds that the market isn’t done growing yet: it’s expected to increase by almost 60 percent by 2017.
China became the top country in the world for red wine consumption last year, but the total amount consumed dropped 2.2 percent by volume in 2013. This marked a steep decline from each year of the previous decade, when Chinese wine consumption grew at about 25 percent by volume annually. China’s ongoing anti-corruption campaign and a decline in popularity of domestically produced wine have been cited as reasons for last year’s disappointing numbers.
However, the report is optimistic that total growth will pick up in the coming years as well, albeit at a slower rate than before. While wine consumption as a whole grew by 134.3 percent in China from 2008 to 2012, it’s expected to increase by 33.8 percent from 2013 to 2017.
Although red wine is especially popular for gifting thanks to its auspicious color, experts also believe there is huge room for growth in the China market for other types of wines. “China is like Japan 20 years ago. The Japanese started with red but the market is now very mature with a huge space for white, rosé and sparkling,” said Vinexpo CEO Guillaume Deglise.