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Wine export boom predicted

By Phil Boeyen, ShareChat Business News Editor

Thursday 31st August 2000

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The New Zealand Wine Institute is predicting wine exports could double over the next five years.

The institute has just released its annual report showing international sales of New Zealand wine have reached more than 19 million litres a year, bringing in almost $170 million.

It says a survey of major exporters projects that international sales may double over the next five years, possibly reaching 40 million litres and $375 million in 2005.

Institute chairman, Peter Hubscher, says at this level exports would represent just over 50% of total industry sales.

The annual report has also highlighted continuing vineyard expansion, which is expected to rise by a third by 2003. Mr Hubscher says the increased production will make for both opportunities and challenges.

"Higher production will enable the industry to boost exports substantially above current levels. On the other hand the world already has a wine surplus, competition is increasing, and we will need to invest heavily to develop profitable niche markets."

Mr Hubscher says New Zealand now needs to build further on what is already a success story.

"We have secured a small but growing place in the fine wine shops, supermarkets and restaurant wine lists of the world. Provided we take the right steps, the future for New Zealand wine is bright. In 2010 the industry should be significantly larger, more dynamic and more profitable, providing lasting benefits to the New Zealand economy".

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