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Anivin announces its ambassador wines for 2015

Published:  03 March, 2015

Anivin de France, the organisation responsible for promoting Vin de France Wines, has announced 112 'ambassador' wines for 2015.

Anivin de France, the organisation responsible for promoting Vin de France Wines has announced 112 "ambassador" wines for 2015.

The wines selection includes 23 gold medal winners and 89 silver medal winners, and were chosen at the Best Value Vin de France Selection Tasting earlier this month. They will be on show at Prowein later this month.

Nearly 30% more wines submitted for selection by French companies, with 83 companies entering 372 wines for consideration.

The judging panel comprised 34 international wine experts representing nine different countries including the UK, the Netherlands, China, Germany and USA and moderated by members of the Union des Oeonologues de France. British judges, Beth Willard of Laithwaites Wine, Clive Donaldson, wine sourcing manager of Morrisons, and Marcia Waters MW of Oxford Wine Company.

Beth Willard said the Vin de France was very relevant for Laithwaites' market because it allowed them to focus on the right style and price for their customers rather than selling what a certain appellation allows. "Vin de France gives one the ability to choose the best grapes from whatever region of France - and you can move production/selection between regions depending on the quality of each year," she said. "It gives us flexibility."

Donaldson said a classification that allowed management of cost and quality hand-in-hand had "real potential". "It gives a chance to establish a brand based on quality criteria and then innovate on the side of those criteria," he said. "You have got the chance to use your brand and then flex it according to global trends in a way that France could never really draw on before."

US importer Geoffrey Pattison agreed that the Vin de France system gave winemakers the ability to craft wines creatively and create better ripeness, flavours and drinkability than was possible under the more restrictive AOC system. "I think this category is positioned to do very well in America. The New World style labeling, creative marketing and modern winemaking all cater to exactly what American consumers gravitate toward. There is definitely a sense that they are using creative at this level."

Exports of bottle Vin de France wines with varietal on the label have grown 2.5% since 2013 to 624k hectolitres, compared to PGI bottled wines up 1.8% and AOP bottle wines down 5.5%.

The UK is Vin de France's second largest market with a 15% market share. Volume imports of bottled Vin de France wines with varietal on the label have increased by 15% versus last year. However export markets outside the EU, which account for a quarter of Vin de France wines, have seen growth of 33% versus last year, with Canada and the USA doubling imports year on year.