Lidl eyes up Eastern European wines

Lidl is eyeing up Eastern Europe for future development following the success of the Hungarian wine range it launched as part of its Wine Cellar promotion in March.

(Photo: Wiki)

(Photo: Wiki)

Wine buying manager Anna Krettman said the “stand-out” white whites from Hungary, including the Château Dereszla Tokaji Furmint (£5.99) and Tornai 2013 Somló Juhfark had gone down “particularly well” with consumers. The discounter is set to roll out further Hungarian lines and is set to explore Eastern Europe further, she added.

“There is a lot more to bring out from Eastern Europe,” she told db. “The Hungarian offer that came in with Cellar on 3 March has done very well for us and we will definitely do more in the next few Cellars. It has been flying off the shelf.”

Austria was another area that had sold well when it had been added on an hoc basis, she noted. “We haven’t done a [full] Austrian range yet, but we would like to put it on shelf in the Easter or summer next year. In general, aromatic grapes are more popular across the board and people like them and are willing to give them a try.”

Caroline Gilby MW, who works with Lidl as of three MWs on its wine scoring and selection panel, said the idea was to tap into the discounter’s buying teams across Europe and use their existing connections to local growers, a strategy that “made sense” given Lidl’s size and reach.

“Romania is definitely an obvious one to look at next, and I would love to see Moldovia too, as there is lots of potential there, as well as Croatia, Slovenia, Macedonia and Bulgaria in the longer-term,” she said, adding that it would take time for this to filter through.

The retailer has also seen increasing demand for New World wines, which is growing, and it is looking to bring in more regionality over the next 12- 18 months, Krettman told db, which is likely to be added to its existing Cimarosa range.

Currently comprising around 18 skus, Cimarosa is in the process of being updated with new packaging to better reflect each sku’s country of origin and create a bigger impact, with the new bottles going on shelf over the next few weeks.

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