22 Aug 2008

Australia now country's biggest wine export market

3:54 pm on 22 August 2008

Australia is now New Zealand's largest export wine market after overtaking Britain.

Wine export earnings for the past year reached a record $800 million, up 14%.

New Zealand Winegrowers says the results are in line with projections, and the industry remains on target to reach $1 billion of exports by 2010.

Chief executive Philip Gregan says there has been a big growth in exports to Australia over the past three to four years, particularly sauvignon blanc and pinot noir and shiraz.

Mr Gregan says he is not concerned at reports of Marlborough sauvignon blanc wine being sold in bulk to Australian buyers because of this year's bumper harvest.