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HKTDC readies for wine fair

The Hong Kong Trade and Development Council’s Wine & Spirits fair will take place in Hong Kong next month with new exhibitors and features.

From 6-8 November more than 1,000 exhibitors from 34 countries and regions will take part in this year’s fair, which is now in its seventh year, while 70 buying missions and over 2,000 companies from around the world are expected to attend.

Hong Kong continues to be one of Asia’s leading markets despite recent economic issues in China.

Benjamin Chau, deputy executive director of the HKTDC, said: “In the first eight months of 2014, the value of Hong Kong’s wine exports amounted to US$190 million, representing nearly 40% increase compared to the same period in 2013.

“Imports of wine grew to US$713 million in the January to August period, a year-on-year increase of 3.9%.”

Alongside traditional exhibitors from France, Spain, Australia and the US, this year three new countries, including Belarus and Macedonia will be exhibiting as well.

There will be an increased emphasis on spirits this year as well with a new “Whisky and Spirits Zone”, which will feature a whisky and brandy bar and an ice bar.

There will be some 90 spirits exhibitors at the fair and aside from Scotch whisky there’ll be rum for the Dominican Republic and gin from Spain. Cocktail demonstrations will feature at the ice bar.

Masterclasses are integral to most fairs and the HKTDC is no exception. Masterclasses will range from: “Management Power-up Workshop for F&B Operators – How to Well-utilise Sommelier/Wine Steward Position” featuring Nelson Chow, chairman of the Hong Kong Sommelier Association, Greater China, and representatives from various Asia-Pacific sommelier associations.

Elsewhere, Dr Justin Cohen of the University of South Australia will be the keynote speaker for “The ‘State of Play’ of the China Wine Market” seminar.

Debra Meiburg MW will be hosting a masterclass on “Sauce and Sauce: Matching Chinese Sauces with Wines”.

Meiburg is also the Director of the Cathay Pacific Hong Kong International Wine & Spirit Competition which is in its sixth edition this year.

The competition’s Award Presentation Ceremony will take place in the evening of the opening day of the fair, while the winning products will be showcased at the Wine Gallery during the fair period.

A series of fine wine tasting sessions will also be hosted featuring wine from such countries as Australia, Germany and France as well as a Spanish Fine Wine Tasting by Wines from Spain and Spanish Trade Commission (Hong Kong).

The fair will be held at the Hong Kong Exhibition Centre. It will be trade only from 6-7 November with the public allowed to be admitted on Saturday 8 November.

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