More wine grown in China than France

China has now overtaken France to become the world’s second largest wine grower after Spain, fuelled by increasing demand for red wine.

Changyu vineyard

As reported by the BBC, The International Organisation of Vine and Wine (IOV) stated that China now has 799,000 hectares (ha) of land given to wine growing, placing it second after Spain which has just over 1 million ha.

“China wants to be self-sufficient in all sectors, this one included,” said IOVW director general Jean-Marie Aurand as reported in the Straits Times.

China faces an increasing demand for wine and cultivates mainly imported grapes from all over the world, including Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, Merlot and Chardonnay that are grown in the dry Ningxia, Sichuan and Hebei Provinces. It devoted 11% of its territory to vineyards last year, compared to 4% in 2000.

France is still in the lead globally in terms of wine production at 46.7 million hectoliters (Mhl) whereas China is in eighth place with 11Mhl. Spain and Italy also tipped over 40Mhl each last year.

However, since vines take between four and five years to produce and planting surged about two to three years ago, we could easily see China’s output jump in just a few years’ time, Aurand added.

 

 

 

 

 

4 Responses to “More wine grown in China than France”

  1. J Boyce says:

    Looks like BBC is assuming all of those Chinese vineyards are being used for wine grapes when, in reality, the majority of vineyards in China are for the country’s huge table grape and raisin sectors. Also, given France producers more than four times as much wine as China, it would seem a bit weird for China to have more wine grape vineyards.

    Cheers, Jim Boyce

  2. Liam Young says:

    It’s interesting that the EU paid billions in vine pull schemes, resulting in hundreds of thousands of hectares being pulled, mostly by large conglomerates. Are those same companies involved with the near parallel growth in activity in China? If so, shouldn’t consumers have a right to know if ‘international blends’ contain wine from Chinese (or other) origin?

  3. Edward Ragg says:

    China is indeed not producing as much wine as France and the majority of its vineyards are indeed planted to table grapes. More significantly, how could any international body acquire reliable data as to vineyard plantings of vitis vinifera or even China’s indigenous grape species (some of which are also used for wine production)?

  4. Wombles says:

    “It devoted 11% of its territory to vineyards last year”… Really? 11% of China’s 9.596.961 km² are dedicated to grape surface? That’s great! Seems like not only the poor Panda’s are losing their natural reserves, but apparently according to this article, the very Chinese’s natural habitat is menaced by grape growers…

    Independently from that, I recommend to google “Reality check: China did NOT overtake France as a wine-growing region”

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