Uruguay wines are beginning to seduce Russian palates following the same path of Uruguay beef just a decade ago. In a well researched exclusive for Rusia Hoy, Juan Samuelle says sales of Uruguay wine to Russia have doubled from 2008 to 2012.
Currently barrel wine accounts for the bulk of Uruguay wine exported to Russia; yet, local producers see major upside in the sale of premium bottle wine. Jose Lez, the president of the National Wine Institute (INAVI) says Uruguay exports barrel wine, sparkling wine, Tannat, Moscatel, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot to Russia. Uruguay has already exported 6 million liters of wine to Russia this year and plans to ship 600,000 liters a week this year to Saint Petersburg.
“Russia is a market that doesn’t have a ceiling. One can export millions of liters. Russia is an ally,” says Aramir Silva, the president of Uruguay’s Wine Growers Center (CVU). Today more Uruguay wineries are beginning to ship bottled Tannat, Cabernet and Merlot to Saint Petersburg for distribution and sales in Russian supermarket chains like O’KEY.
The natural pairing of beef with wine, and the fact that Uruguay beef has already conquered Russian palates bodes well for the growth of Uruguay wine in the BRIC nation. While Uruguay shipped no beef to Russia fifteen years ago; last year 85,000 tons of Uruguay beef worth US$352 million entered the Russian market making Uruguay the #2 supplier of premium beef to Russia. (Full Story in Spanish)
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