UK, April 2024

The Drinks Business | Lenz Moser: ‘we arrogant Europeans can learn a lot from China’

The answer to making Chinese wine a global success? Employ an Austrian. Changyu winemaker Lenz Moser tells Eloise Feilden how he plans to raise the profile of premium wines from China.

Were the world of fine wine to have an entrance exam, China would score high. When it comes to historical roots, the country’s winemaking dates back more than 4,000 years. If size matters, China has 800,000 hectares under vine, making it the third-largest wine producer by area in the world. Still, the country is rarely considered among the international big hitters of the wine world. So why is the Republic’s vinous footprint still so small?

China’s problem, according to Austrian winemaker Lenz Moser, is its focus on the domestic market. “They can drink everything at home,” he says, and so they do.

China is the 12th-largest producer of wine worldwide, but ranks 54th when it comes to exports, according to OIV data. Moser, a 15th-generation member of the iconic Austrian winemaker family, is trying to shift the dial.

Brought on by Changyu, China’s largest producer, almost two decades ago, he is on a mission to change the perception of Chinese wine in the eyes of consumers, and believes the best way to do this is to take it overseas

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