Fake Wine Stuns Nation – Really? We’re Not Surpirsed
The headline of China’s national English language daily the Global Times screams, “Fake Wine Stuns Nation” and all we can say is why? China is notorious for food scandals, knock offs and dishonest accounting so why would this surprise anyone? The fact that this is news and is actually being reported is more of a shock than the admission that several of China’s largest wine producers were purposely tainting their wine. We applaud the government for taking action and doing the right thing by bringing this scandal to light.
If China is to be taken seriously in the world of wine it first has to take itself seriously and that means producing a quality, verifiable and transparent wine that meets all normal international standards. Until then they’ll remain a curiosity at best and that is a waste. We had the privilege of spending several weeks in China touring the depth and breadth of the nascent wine industry and in that time we found a lot of passionate and intelligent wine lovers, producers who REALLY cared about delivering a great product, excellent terroir and tremendous promise. To waste this potential would be a shame.
And so as a media group that loves finding new producing regions and as wine lovers who are passionate about making wine a universal pursuit, we really hope that this scandal helps the government, wine industry and most importantly, Chinese consumers to ask more questions and demand a better product. There’s no doubting that China which is world’s 7th largest wine producer and 7th largest wine consumer is the new wave of wine, but what impact they’ll have on the wider world remains a question. We think the middle kingdom could become a great influence and a very positive contributor to the industry we all love so much.
In a funny sort of way a scandal like this, with the right government, industry and consumer response, is exactly what the Chinese wine scene needs to make sure it becomes a truly world class haven for wine lovers. Every region in the world has had growing pains and so here’s to China’s wine industry getting past hers.
We remain big supporters of wine in China and think 2011 should be a seminal year for wine lovers.