German wine exports sales have reached record levels with an 11% increase in sales in the last year.
According to just released figures from the German Wine Institute, 2.7m hectolitres of wine worth almost US€500m were exported between May 2005 and April 2006, an increase of 11% on the previous year.
In the US – Germany’s second largest export market – German wine topped the US$100m barrier for the first time, almost exclusively through Riesling sales, leaping by 27% in volume and 22.7% in price.
‘We are seeing sales figures returning to what they were before the Austrian
wine scandal in 1985, which affected Germany as well,’ the Wine Institute’s Ernst Büscher told decanter.com.
The Institute’s export marketing director Steffen Schindler announced that a focus on quality Riesling has improved German wine sales abroad.
‘Top wine journalists all over the world praise our best white wines and many restaurants, from New York to Sydney, feature German Rieslings,’ he said.
The UK remains Germany’s most important export market – with €128m in sales – but the last year saw a slight dip of -0.5%, especially in low end wines costing less than £3 per bottle.
The loss was somewhat compensated by an upswing in higher end wine sales, according to the Wine Institute.
Written by Panos Kakaviatos