India International Wine Fair & Gourmet Show 2009 opens
The two-day India International Wine Summit on “Overview of the wine market in India” and “The business case for the wine industry in India” was inaugurated at Grand Hyatt in Mumbai on March 16, as part of the 1st edition of India International Wine Fair & Gourmet Show 2009. Over 70 delegates from across the globe participated in the convention. Addressing the summit, Harshal Shah, Sommelier, Australian Sommelier’s Association, said that in the last few years there had been many tie-ups between domestic wine and alcoholic beverages manufacturers and foreign manufacturers. “Still we don’t have world class foreign wine brands in India,” Shah said.
Speaking on “Overcoming India’s restrictive import regime,” Sanjay Menon, importer, Sonarys, and director for Wine Society of India, said, “India is comparatively a new wine drinking country in the world. Here, people have just started appreciating wine and there is scope for faster growth than other Asian countries like China, Singapore and Japan. Importing foreign wines and brands in India will help the domestic wine industry to grow, develop and improve their product quality and size of the market swiftly.”
Menon also discussed the problems faced by the wine industry in the country. According to him, the development of the Indian wine industry faces a setback due to complex and time consuming import procedures by the government and banks, state-to-state taxation policies, PHO (public health officer) testing for every consignment, label registration obligation and lack of infrastructure & logistics like state-of-the-art bonded warehouse, cold chains and other wine storage devices.
“The expected market size of the Indian beverages market is about 200 million cases and 300 million cases of beer and country made wine respectively, whereas the country imports only about 2 lakh cases of premium wine every year. The world wine industry has the skill, experience, finances which can be shared to develop the alcoholic beverages market in the country,” Menon added.
He asked the government to provide proper direction and assistance to develop the industry, wine consuming culture and recognise domestic manufacturers for their creation.
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