Australian exports halt value slide

A 17-month slide in the value of Australian wine exports has been arrested.

The moving annual total (MAT) for the 12 months to the end of March was AUS$2.436bn, AUS$320,000 more than the February MAT.

It is the first increase since October 2007 when the MAT reached AUS$3.039bn, which is still the record.

Export volumes notched their fifth successive increase and are now 723.3m litres compared with last October’s MAT of 694.3m litres.

Australian Wine and Brandy Corporation data released today show that that bulk shipments are the prime cause but possibly because more premium wine is being exported in bulk and packaged in export markets to reduce costs.

Exports to China are booming, volume increasing 61.3% to 19.2m litres from the February MAT, value jumping 49.4% to AUS$81.2m.

China currently is the eighth largest export market but poised to soon overtake New Zealand, the Netherlands and Demark and then Germany which is fourth with March MATs of 25.5m litres and AUS$51.2m.

The UK remains the largest market with March MATs of 256.7m litres worth AUS$747.5m, followed by the US which took 221.9m litres worth AUS$714.2m and Canada which took 43m litres worth AUS$214.8m.

Written by Chris Snow in Adelaide