Chile rides out

24 July, 2018

Definition and consistency are the main points Chile’s wineries need to consider, according to Undurraga’s Izquierdo.

“Each one of us needs to define what we want to be, what wines we are able or want to offer, what is the positioning we want to have as a brand, and to be consistent and realistic in the actions we make towards this goal.

Emiliana’s Gillmore would like to see greater co-operation among Chile’s wine producers, with more organisations to protect DO and quality denominations.

“That will help us greatly and give a more consistent and clear message to the world about the aim to increase quality perception, and also take a stronger position as a country to be leaders of environmentally friendly viticulture. That can also have a greater impact on the overall image of the country.”

Vía’s Kuscevic says: “We need to believe in ourselves. If you go to any fair in the world and you ask 10 Chilean wineries, half of them will be willing to sell wines below $20 FOB (free on board) per case. This would be impossible to think of in New Zealand or California, as an example.”

“Chile needs to keep investing in image to be recognised as a producer of higher end wines,” says Mont Gras marketing director Pilar Peñafiel. “Today it is still very difficult to have a higher participation in this price point as people are not looking for Chilean wines in this segment.”

But, as Marnier-Lapostolle points out, Chile doesn’t give up: “Chile, as a producing or exporting country, is a fighter. Whether it was the 2010 earthquake, the rouble crisis, the 2014 frosts, the 2016 devaluation of the pound, the 2017 fires, life carries on and more, importantly, the Chilean wineries carry on.

“There will always be hiccups on the export road, but the Chilean mentality is to carry on. Sell the dream, sell the terroir, and don’t just sell wine below a certain retail price, ” he sums up.

So, there’s nothing wrong with Chilean wine, or Volvos, for that matter.

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Nick Strangeway

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