Exports of Armenian wine drop by 42% y/y in Jan-Aug

By bne IntelliNews December 16, 2015

Armenia's alcoholic beverage sector, one of the important contributors to GDP and employment in the country, is mulling the formation of "seven or eight" cooperatives comprising of grape farmers and wine and brandy makers, according to Avag Harutyunyan, chairman of the Union of Armenian Winemakers. The cooperatives would solve some of the problems arising from a mismatch between the types of grapes farmers harvest, and what the wine and brandy industry needs.

Harutyunyan expects the country's exports of wine and brandy to increase by up to 50% and 15% in 2016 respectively on the back of a bumper grape crop this year.

However, exports of brandy declined by 50% y/y and of wine by 42% in January-August because of the economic recession in Russia, the largest destination for Armenian wine and brandy. Russia reportedly purchases 80% of Armenia's alcoholic beverage exports, and the remaining 20% goes to Central Asian countries.

The drop in exports prompted wine makers to purchase smaller amounts of grapes, which in turn led to social unrest among grape farmers, whose grape harvest was 30% larger in 2015 compared to 2014, and part of which went bad. Farmers resorted to exporting 36% more fresh grapes y/y to offset the lower demand from the wine industry.

The Armenian Agriculture Ministry is also seeking to diversify export markets, and is planning to send a delegation to India in February to promote the country's wine exports.

Related Articles

Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia enjoying Persian new year influx of Iranians

Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia are enjoying a welcome injection of revenues from the annual influx of Iranians enjoying their long Nowruz Persian new year holiday. Anecdotal evidence indicates ... more

Iran could join Moscow-led EEU by May says Russian minister

Russia’s Energy Minister Aleksander Novak has said Iran could join the Eurasian Economic Union (EEU) by May, RT reported on March 10. Tehran has repeatedly lobbied Moscow over the past year to ... more

Armenian energy minister says renewables, nuclear power to replace Russian gas

The Armenian government will continue with its efforts to reduce the share of Russian gas in the country's electricity mix, Energy Minister Ashot Maukyan said on January 31, according to the local ... more

Dismiss