Portugal rides export wave

While exports from European competitors decreased last year, Portuguese still wine exports increased in value and volumes. Galvanised by the rise of exports, Portugal’s bigger companies face the challenge of raising the low average export prices.

Barnaby Eales has the story.

Casa Santos Lima’a 2u Lisbon wine became the biggest selling red wine brand in Finland last year. Pictured here are vineyards in the Algarve, where the company has planted 50 ha of vines.
Casa Santos Lima’a 2u Lisbon wine became the biggest selling red wine brand in Finland last year. Pictured here are vineyards in the Algarve, where the company has planted 50 ha of vines.

 

Portuguese wine exports have leapt by 20.3 percent in value this year, a dramatic increase when compared to the 3.3 percent average annual growth recorded over the past ten years. Together with this year’s growth in the US and Brazil, the surge in Portuguese exports of quality still wines, sold at attractive prices, points to a recovery in key EU markets, including Germany, where there’s a growing thirst for Portuguese whites. Despite tremendous growth last year in Sweden and Finland, where Casa Santos Lima red wines outstripped their French and Australian counterparts to become the biggest selling brand, Portuguese wine exports decreased in the EU last year overall. 

Portugal bucked 2020’s global trend of a fall in exports, by increasing exports, with growth predominantly recorded in the US and Brazil, Alentejo’s biggest export market, where in contrast to the overall global downturn in consumption, wine drinking increased by 18 percent according to the OIV (International Organisation of Vine and Wine). Portugal had already raised its profile prior to the uncertainty of the pandemic and Brexit and was therefore a good option for importers to turn to, says Max Driscoll, a manager at the wine import company Raymond Reynolds Ltd in Britain.

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