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Published:  23 July, 2008

By Jack Hibberd

Exports of Chilean wine to the UK have grown by one- third in a year, according to the latest figures from the Chilean government. The figures, which cover the period from January to September 2004, show an overall rise of 34% by volume and 29% by value, with bottled wine exports up 25% to 3,944 million cases and bulk wine exports up 68% up to 9,247,630 litres. Michael Cox, director of the UK office of Wines of Chile, said he was unconcerned that bulk wine exports are rising faster than bottled, which goes against his stated aim to rise sales in the 5-plus category. The dramatic rise in bulk exports is almost certainly down to a number of multiples, including Tesco, deciding to bottle all their own-label Chilean wines in the UK rather than Chile. For me, this makes the 25% rise in bottled wines all the more impressive. And I still believe that there has never been a better time for Chilean producers to raise their premium wine sales in the UK.'