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Global wine industry's future is strong says world leaders poll ahead of Wine Vision

Published:  15 November, 2013

Up to three quarters of business leaders around the world rate the future prospects for the global wine industry as being either good or excellent, according to an exclusive poll ahead of next week's Wine Vision conference in London.

As the leading chief executives and key trade figures from across the global wine industry prepare to gather for the first Wine Vision conference, can give you the initial findings of an exclusive survey taken to assess their feelings on how they see the industry and what challenges and opportunities lie ahead.

Not only are they overwhelmingly positive about the global wine sector 77% are also confident about the state of the global economy.

But although the long-term picture is rosy, the survey's respondents pinpointed growing costs as presenting the biggest distribution headache for the trade over the next five years. Rising transport fees cause the most concern, followed by raw material costs, while customer-led supply-chain developments are also proving tricky to integrate.

The survey is also good news for the UK wine industry. Depsite concerns that major wine producers are turning their backs on the UK in favour of more profitable world wine markets, the study reveals 76% agreed or strongly agreed that the UK is of great importance to their businesses. That said 72% feel that the UK market is too price-sensitive. Possible opportunities for the future include the independent wine merchant sector, singled out by 56% as growing in importance.

Online sales were forecast as seeing the most growth by 44% of respondents, followed by direct to consumer sales - via cellar doors or online through own websites - at 36%.

Main areas for growth

The best ways to enhance profitability in the next five years are either through organic growth (according to 58%), or by a greater understanding of the consumer (50%). Mergers and acquisitions are much less of a priority, and business leaders expect them to account for growth in only 15% of cases.

China is heralded as the next major market, identified by the key players as having the biggest growth potential, followed by India and Brazil. However, India was also considered the most-overrated market.

·         The full findings will be made available to Wine Vision delegates. Harpers subscribers can read a more in-depth analysis at