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Australian Moscato woe in the UK

Some of Australia’s biggest producers have admitted they are struggling to sell any Moscato wines in the UK.

Speaking to the drinks business at the World Class Australia annual trade tasting in London, a number of major players complained that low demand due to a lack of consumer awareness is hindering efforts to introduce the low-alcohol, sparkling wines to the UK market.

Paul Letheren of Off-Piste Wines said the Moscato offering from Yellowtail has proved extremely difficult to sell.

“I don’t think we’ve sold any at all,” he said. “The problem is quite simple; nobody knows what it is, which is a shame because it’s really pretty good."

A Constellation spokesperson added: “There is a lot of work to do in the UK with Moscato.

“The fact that it is relatively low-alcohol doesn’t really help, but the lack of consumer awareness is really quite worrying and is a pretty bad reflection on the education of wine consumers in this country.

One possible suggestion, from Anthony Fairbank of Off-Piste, would be for the supermarkets to give low-alcohol wines more prominence.

“Maybe supermarkets could open up special low-alcohol sections,” he said. “That way, there is more chance of people seeking out lower-alcohol wines to find what they are looking for and picking up a bottle of Moscato.

“However, it remains to be seen whether there is enough of a market out there for this to be of any benefit.”

Alan Lodge, 04.02.2010

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