Ridgeview’s export success – paving the way for other English wineries
Award-winning English sparkling wine business, Ridgeview Wine Estate, are leading the way for English wineries exporting outside the UK with their wines widely available in twelve markets globally. Ridgeview has recently seen a huge increase in exports, with 30% of production now being sold abroad.
Tamara Roberts, Chief Executive of family-owned Ridgeview, based in Sussex, commented “Our export portfolio really escalated when we were awarded the Trophy for the Best Sparkling Wine in the World in the Decanter World Wine awards in 2010. Since then we have seen our exports rise from 2% with the greatest growth in the last two years, from 14% in 2014 to a projected 30% this year. We have welcomed five new markets in the last two years alone. In 2008 Finland was our first export market, followed by Norway with the most recent being the Caribbean, and we are close to adding several other countries to our growing list. Our work with UKTI (UK Trade and Investment) and their GREAT! Campaign has really supported our growth and our plans for the future are extremely exciting.”
Roberts added ‘we have worked really hard to make sure we have the right distributors in the markets we work with. They share our values, know our expectations and we have joint aspirations to grow our businesses. They are forward-thinking partners and are passionate about our product: we consider them to be an extension of the Ridgeview team, and consequently, our brand. When it takes over five years for your product to go from grapes in the vineyard, through secondary fermentation in bottle, a few years in the cellar then eventually into the labelled bottle, you have to be careful who looks after your image, and your wines.”
Ridgeview has exported to well-established, yet complicated market the US for five years. Last week all five of their wines entered into the Texsom awards were awarded medals, a first for an English winery including a Gold Medal for Ridgeview 2010 Rosé de Noirs. Texsom is the most prominent and influential beverage education and training conference in the United States and has been recognised as one of the most important wine events in the world.
With Ridgeview’s new winery being built to accommodate ambitious plans, exports on the rise, the International Cool Climate symposium being held in Brighton next month, and the industry looking more cohesive than ever, it’s an exciting time to be producing English Sparkling Wine.