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Exports of French wine and spirits climb

Exports of French wine and spirits were up a record 12.9% in 2006.

The figures, announced this week by the FEVS (Federation des Exportateurs de vins et spiritueux de France), show the total value of exports was €8.74bn, up 12.9% on 2005.

‘It has been a record year thanks to exceptional results from our star products Champagne and Cognac,’ FEVS president Philippe Casteja said.

Champagne was up by 14.7% on 2005, with sales of €2.1bn.

Spirits exports were up 16.4% on 2005 in value. Sales were dominated by Cognac, which contributed €1.5bn to the total.

Apart from Champagne, FEVS noted a continuing recovery in wine exports, up 9.9% with sales of €3.9bn.

AOC wines did particularly well, showing an increase in export value of 13.5%. The exceptions were the regions of Languedoc Roussillon, which was down 9.6%, and Beaujolais, down 3%.

Burgundy and Bordeaux came first and second in the AOC table, with increases in export values of 9% and 5.8% respectively.

The US was the number one consumer in value overall for wine and spirits, importing €2.4bn of wine and spirits, a 22.2% increase on 2005.

The UK was the number two consumer in value for wine and spirits taking €1.5bn, up 8.2%.

For wine only the UK remained the top importer of French wines by value – but with a slower growth rate than the US. American imports by value grew by 17.9% compared to the UK’s growth by value of 9.7%.

Exports to China showed the biggest single increase at 44.8%, a total of €101m.

Written by Sophie Kevany

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