China Wine Press | Changyu buys three Chilean wineries, California-China links, Geoff Raby wine

All the wine world’s a stage and China keeps getting bigger roles. Some press coverage of that drama. Compiled by J. Boyce

I recently posted that Changyu is not only the biggest producer in China but also a rising importer that ranked sixth as a bottled wine importer in 2016. Look for its numbers to rise given this Xinhua report that Changyu purchased three Chilean wineries, with the deals expected to be completed this month. That adds to Changyu’s other overseas possessions, most notably in France, and comes on the heels of Chilean President Michelle Bachelet opening a Wine Road Show in China during her recent visit to Beijing.

California wines have not had an easy time in China, particularly in terms of volume, with Australia, Chile and South Africa all seeing much bigger gains. But one area in which they seem to be doing well is in attracting investment from China, reports CGTN. The catch, at least in the case of the Temecula Valley southwest of Los Angeles, is the EB-5 visa, which ties U.S. citizenship to investments of USD500,000 or more. From CGTN:

[Temecula Valley] has been producing wine for 50 years, but up until a few years ago, there were just a handful of established wineries.

Temecula, however, is now going through a renaissance. Not only are existing wineries expanding, but new developments are in the works. This recent boom is being fueled by more available financing, much of it coming from China.

One winery appraiser is cited as saying half of his clients are Chinese. Full story here.

And former Australian Ambassador to China Geoff Raby has been immortalized on the labels of 15,000 bottles of Barossa Shiraz produced by the Swan Wine Group. According to the Australian Financial Review, Swan wines are sold via 1919 stores, WalMart, Carrefour and, thus giving rabid Raby fans several places in which to search for the wine. Full story here.

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