This overview contents a huge range of topics just as Chinese people really like to do: to discuss after been talking for a couple of hours, normally around a tea table or around a bottle of wine, which has become more frequently lately.
In this new era,
the wine can play a great role in China. The wine invites people to talk, to share, to change the environment and to get moments to relax: the most of the Chinese doesn’t really have these moments because they are used to work hard, they have families and most of them are living under the pressure for a better life, to earn more money and to rise up a reputation in the society. In the case of China, it goes fast. For them, short time refers to few months, medium time, a year and longtime means, at maximum, three years. Everything changes quick and the Chinese has been educated to be the first, to do it fast with a strong competition and the environment flows to create trends, to spend, to waste and to consume. Hopefully, wine is not just a trend; wine arrived to Chinese society to stay for a long time, and to stable in their daily lifestyle.
After this short introduction, let’s talk about wine. Wine has brought to this awesome Chinese culture another way to connect with people, similar as Tea rules in China (which plays a role to let people sitting together for drinking and talking). But while tea offers people a clear and serious mind, wine brings people bravery, friendship increases and generates a relaxing atmosphere to feel closer to each other. There is a Chinese prescript that works always: if you have problem with someone, you should invite him to drink wine; if inviting him once was not enough to solve it, then, invite him twice.
During the past years, wine has becomes more accessible to all the social statements; reminding me a simple question:
“What is the wine you like most?”
I always reply on the same way: depends on where, depends on with who I am sharing it and depends on how much money I would pay for it.
In China, is happening something similar. It is easy to find a bottle of wine in many stores and shops, there are wines to all kinds of people, with a huge diversity in terms of origin, grapes, price average…
And this is the game which we (Spanish Wine Producers) play. The game is easy and hard, at the same time.
In one hand, it is easy because China represents the future, the largest consumer worldwide with the biggest medium class and having positive synergies between wine and their culture and lifestyle. Also, it is easy because Chinese people like drink and sometimes, take out from the pressure. Also, we must not forget the similitudes between China and Spain.
On the other hand, it is hard because the key point of the business is to learn how they think. If we don’t learn the way that they understand the life, we will not be able to have successful in business with them; unfortunately, for western citizens, sometimes it is really hard because we have grown up in a completely different environment with different values and different kinds of needs. Also, we have found many differences between the generations born after 90´s and the people who born before 90´s. Language is also a big barrier.
So, we as a Spanish Winery who love the Chinese Culture and People, we only can have a high appreciation of Chinese customs and traditions. Due to that we only have one way: to continue learning how they think. If we achieve it, everything will be easier.
The Wine is not a trend in China, it is a reality.
We love Wine, we love Spanish Wines and we love China and his citizens.
Darío Barco III
International Sales Manager – Algod
Guiyang Airport, Xian Airport, Atocha Train Station.