Vinexpo to increase emphasis on spirits

This May’s Vinexpo Hong Kong will feature a dedicated spirits zone to capitalise on the fast growing drinks category in Asia.

Scotch

Spirits represent around 15% of the total number of exhibitors at Vinexpo

Speaking to the drinks business in London this morning, new Vinexpo CEO Guillaume Deglise said he was creating a new spirits area comprising a mix of tastings, cocktail demonstrations and new products placed centrally on Level 3 at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre.

“We want to create new things and one of these things is a new space dedicated to spirits,” he told db, referring to Vinexpo’s Hong Kong fair, which runs from 27-29 May this year.

“We believe that the market for spirits is growing very fast in Asia, and Asia-Pacific is already the largest consumer of spirits in the world,” he added.

Indeed, IWSR data released by Vinexpo today showed the Asia-Pacific region accounted for almost 63% of the total spirits drunk worldwide in 2012, with white spirit Baijiu alone representing 38% of global spirits consumption.

Deglise said the show organiser was planning to build a bar in the middle of the main exhibition hall on the third floor of the Hong Kong convention centre which would allow mixologists and producers to showcase new spirits.

Currently spirits represent around 15% of the total number of exhibitors at Vinexpo Hong Kong (as well as Bordeaux), although Deglise wants to increase this number.

“We should emphasise the role of spirits and Vinexpo should be the place where you find the trends in the market and the trend is very clear on spirits,” he said.

“Spirits consumption is growing and we need to have more spirits and give more activities around spirits,” he stressed.

Spirits volumes increased in the Asia-Pacific region by 55% between 2008 and 2012, according to the IWSR, although luxury imported brown spirits sales have slowed significantly in the fast-growing Chinese market since the government’s crackdown on overt displays of wealth among state officials.

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