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Published:  23 July, 2008

Major Chilean wine producer Concha y Toro has bought Francisco de Aguirre in Chile's Limar valley for US$17 million.

Along with 320 hectares, Francisco de Aguirre has a production and storage capacity of five million litres and a bottling line. Its brands include: Palo Alto, Dona Gabriela, Vertigo, Tenta and Tempus.

With exports of Casillero del Diablo to the UK alone running at 417,318 cases, up from 28,000 in 2000, CyT needed to gain more control over production. A spokesperson commented: From a production point of view, it is crucial for Concha y Toro to have a presence in the Limar valley, which has great potential for high-quality wine production. Its proximity to the Atacama Desert means that it is practically arid, with significant temperature differentials between night and day. CyT has been using Limar fruit for some time to introduce mineral nuances, complexity and elegance, particularly to Chardonnay.'

CyT UK's managing director Cristian Lopez has announced that 15 of its new releases with be under screwcap - all the aromatic grape varieties along with the Pinot Noirs and ros.