A number of European wine bodies are looking to export to the UK for the first time, signalling renewed confidence in the market.
That is according to London Wine Fair which, despite uncertain trading conditions, has reported a significant increase in bookings from the Old World for the event taking place between 20-22 May at Olympia London.
Year-on-year, bookings are up 36% overall, with international bookings driving most of the growth. The Douro, Greece, Slovakia, the Basque Country and Belarus are all taking generic pavilions for the first time. Wines of Georgia is set to return after debuting at last year’s show, and Viniportugal is bringing 36 producers, all looking to export to the UK for the first time; they will exhibit within the Wines Unearthed zone.
In addition, wines of Germany is increasing its presence and Italy has also increased stand space, with a particular uplift from Prosecco Consorzio.
Head of London Wine Fair, Hannah Tovey, said: “So far we are seeing most of the growth in bookings coming from international exhibitors, specifically the Old World regions. We see this as really significant, given that the show will take place less than two months after Brexit may well have become reality.
“European wineries will be out in force looking to trade with the UK – many of them for the first time. Despite the uncertainty, the UK remains an important and mature market for many wineries, especially those which are targeting the high end on-trade and independent sectors.”