Washington wineries seek international opportunities

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Washington wineries seek international opportunities

Posted on Aug 11 by Sophie Hubbell

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Washington wineries seek international opportunities

Reported in the Puget Sound Business Journal, the value of Washington-made wine being shipped overseas increased 243 percent between 2006 and 2016, according to trade statistics from the U.S. Census Bureau.

Fast Facts:

  • As of 2017, there are more than 900 wineries in the state, double the amount seen in Washington just 10 years ago
  • In 2016, Washington state produced a record harvest of 270,000 tons of grapes and approximately 17.5 million cases of wine
  • Last year, Washington state exported $27.3 million worth of wine
  • The total economic impact in 2016 was $2.067 billion
  • Washington state is focused on the premium wine market segment (wines sold for $8 and higher)
  • Eastern Washington is the major grape growing region

Today, wineries are attracting international attention. Approximately 5 percent of the state’s wine is exported overseas, presenting an opportunity for growth in the industry. Chateau Ste. Michelle, the state’s largest wine producer, exports 10 percent of its wine to 35 different countries particularly in Asia, Northern Europe and Canada. The winery produced 14.73 million gallons in 2016.  

The future of wine in Washington state relies heavily on increasing market share in Washington as well as in key target markets in the U.S. and abroad. In particular, China is the second largest wine market in the world and is the largest market for red and Bordeaux wines. The country also has the most students in wine certification classes, making it an important market opportunity for Washington state wines.

For more information on Washington wine, explore the Washington Wine Commission’s website.