Wine industry launches campaign to boost production and consumption

Mexico News Daily
May 2, 2018

Winemakers’ council says land used for grape cultivation could double in 10-15 years.

Mexico’s wine industry is set to get a boost with the launch of a campaign designed to promote their product and educate consumers about winemaking processes and regions.

Called “Todos Unidos por el Vino Mexicano” (Everyone United for Mexican Wine), the campaign will be carried out by the Mexican Winemakers’ Council (CMV) and supported by a grant from the federal Agriculture Secretariat (Sagarpa).

It will also seek to cultivate greater knowledge about the varietals that Mexico produces and highlight the high quality of local wines.

News of the promotional initiative comes after the lower house of the federal Congress last week unanimously passed the General Law to Promote the Wine-Producing Industry.

The Senate has already approved the law, which is intended to promote the sector and increasing its productivity and competitiveness.

With its backing, the CMV estimates that over the next 10 to 15 years the amount of land dedicated to grape cultivation for wine production could double.

Mexican vineyards currently cover 6,474 hectares, with 72% of Mexico’s entire national wine production concentrated in just four states.

Baja California — home to the country’s premier wine region the Valle de Guadalupe — produces 57% of all Mexican wine followed by Coahuila with 8.5%, Querétaro with 4%, and Guanajuato 2.3%.

CMV president Daniel Milmo Brittingham also believes that there is significant scope to increase national wine consumption.

Mexicans today drink on average 0.96 liters of wine a year, 210 milliliters more than in 2014, when annual consumption averaged 0.75 liters, or a standard bottle of wine.

However, consumption in Mexico remains low compared to many European countries as well as the United States and Canada, where people are drinking about 17 times more wine than Mexicans on an annual basis.

Much more wine is also consumed in Chile and Argentina — both large wine-producing countries — compared to Mexico.

According to the International Organization of Vine and Wine (IOV), Mexico is the world’s 45th largest wine-producing nation with an annual capacity of over 2.1 million cases.

However, domestically-produced wine accounts for less than one-third of consumption in Mexico, with imports making up 70.6% of the market. The biggest sources of imported wines are Chile, Argentina, Spain, France, Italy and the United States.

With that in mind, Milmo considers the approval of the General Law to Promote the Wine-Producing Industry a historic decision for the industry and called on the government to implement its measures quickly.

Mexican wine prices are predicted to fall by as much as 17% once the new law is fully implemented but the wine industry has said that taxes represent 42.5% of a wine’s cost, and it would like to see that figure come down.

Key aims of the industry are to increase annual production so that in 2022, Mexico is producing 300,000 more liters of wine annually and to increase the domestic market share of Mexican wine from 29.3% to 45%.

If the former goal is achieved, more wine will also be available for export to markets including the United States, Europe and Asia.

CMV general director Gabriel Padilla Maya said that this year the council will also start the process to register the collective brand of vino mexicano with the Mexican Institute of Industrial Property (IMPI).

Registration will ensure that all wine labeled as Mexican contains only grapes grown within the nation’s borders, and that both fermentation and bottling are carried out in Mexico.

Around 2,900 winemakers work in the Mexican industry, which also generates more than 3,000 additional direct and indirect jobs and provides seasonal picking work for more than 500,000 day laborers.

The sector is worth 4.65 billion pesos (US $246.7 million) annually to the Mexican economy.

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