Younger Asian Wine Drinkers Drive Growth in Five Key Markets
|According the new “Asia – Opportunities in China and beyond” survey of the British market research institute Wine Intelligence, China will remain the most attractive Asian market for wine exporters in the next five years. But the wine industry should also take advantage of opportunities in Japan, South Korea, Singapore and even Taiwan – the other key Asian countries studied in the report.|
The results are based on extensive qualitative and quantitative research with consumers, importers and distributors across Asia. This survey about Asian wine markets was commissioned by Messe Düsseldorf, organizer ProWein, International Trade Fair Wines and Spirits, held annually in Düsseldorf, Germany.
Although all five markets differ substantially - it would be a mistake for the wine industry to consider Asia as a single cultural entity - there are some trends and characteristics that can be observed across the continent. The new ProWein study shows that the trend towards every day, affordable imports is evident across Asia as wine gets away from its image of being purely a luxury product and becomes more attractive to younger consumers. They in particular like wine as part of their lifestyles and show a real interest in understanding it better. The on-trade is often the best way to target these consumers.
|China’s spectacular growth is likely to continue due to improved ranges in supermarkets and more affordable pricing. Consumers are associating imported wine with sophistication and wellbeing and the number of imported wine drinkers is expected to increase well beyond the current 19 million.|
In Japan, much of the market growth is being driven by the off-trade, as consumers turn away from the on-trade for economic reasons. Wine is increasingly part of a meal for Japanese families as they embrace more Western-style eating habits. With 47 million regular wine drinkers, Japan is a relatively mature market for wine, with younger consumers regarding wine as a trendy drink and more open to “experiment” than older Japanese wine drinkers.
In South Korea too, growth is coming from younger people. The market has a huge capacity for growth: wine accounts for just 20% of drinks sales and is regarded by many Koreans as a special-occasion beverage. But the market has been growing steadily since 2000, particularly when it comes to Chilean imports and sparkling wines.
Singapore is the smallest of the five markets but the wine industry here is already buoyant, with an increasingly knowledgeable population keen to learn more about wine. Strong brand identity and high volumes are often the key to success in this geographically limited market.
Taiwan is a more problematic market for wine exports than the other Asian countries. There are more barriers facing the wine industry, including a ban on internet sales, high taxes and few English language speakers. The high price of wine and lack of female drinkers are also factors that limit opportunities in Taiwan. But again, younger consumers are showing an interest in wine and helping it to not be regarded as a prestige product.
The upcoming ProWine trade fair in Shanghai (organized by Messe Düsseldorf Shanghai and China International Exhibitions) is the ideal venue to get access to this lucrative Asian wine market. From November 13 - 15, 2013, ProWine China will offer both international and domestic producers of quality wines and spirits a platform, thereby giving Chinese retailers and importers a comprehensive overview and the opportunity for productive business contacts. A diverse supporting program consisting of tastings and seminars will complement the exhibits. With ProWine China, Messe Düsseldorf brings the successful concept of Düsseldorf ProWein to China.