E&J Gallo to focus on premium offering

US-based wine producer E&J Gallo has called 2016 an “important year” for its premium portfolio as it seeks to tap into the growing appetite for higher-priced wines in the UK.

E&J PremiumThe wine producer behind the Dark Horse and Apothic Red brands – which it says are the best-selling Californian premium wines in the UK – will increase its marketing activity and launch new varieties under the labels this year.

Dark Horse will see new Sauvignon Blanc and Merlot varieties launched in British supermarkets this Autumn as part of the push, E&J Gallo revealed.

Olga Senkina, marketing director EMEA at E&J Gallo Winery said: “We’ll be continuing to increase awareness and encourage trial of Apothic Red and Dark Horse, through impactful and original experiential activities.

“We will activate trade marketing activities by using new digital technologies, spreading our voice and increasing awareness of the brands through PR and digital platforms,” she said.

The Apothic Red brand, which retails at £9.99, grew in sales by 27% last year, while the £8.99 Dark Horse – which currently comes in Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay single-variety wines – saw growth of 113%.

The premium push comes as E&J Gallo also launches new varieties for its entry-level Barefoot wine brands.

Barefoot Merlot and Barefoot Chardonnay will be on sale from UK supermarkets later this year.

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