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Situation Analysis Introduction Germany is the worlds most significant market for wine More than fifty percent of wines consumed in Germany come from foreign producers In 1999 imports have been equivalent to 124 million hl at a total value of two billion dollars Core countries to import to Germany are EU countries around 80 namely Italy Spain and France However the share of imports from non-EU countries has been around 15 with forecasts of further growth by year 2000 to 19 Bulgaria Macedonia and Hungary are the principal non-EU suppliers The bulk of imported wine not including liquor and sparkling wines is red wine accounting for 55 German Imports of Wine from Selected Countries -1998 January - October Hl1000 US USA7740225550165 ITALY37804965177703344 FRANCE25122155811643754 SPAIN16985351941491254 MACEDONIA39559320016129 BULGARIA21699618524120 Demand Germany produces primarily delicate light white wines with low alcohol and some red wines About 80 percent of the vineyard area is planted with white grape and 20 percent with red varieties German wine production is characterized by small-scale viticulture Two thirds of the vineyards are part-time enterprises Seventy percent of growers do not produce wine but rather deliver grapes to cooperatives for processing Germany with its 82 million people and the largest economy in Europe is the leading European market for food and beverages Products both of German and other European Union origin dominate the shelves of retail outlets this is mainly due to a duty free movement of goods among EU members Stringent GermanEU food and beverage laws as well as packaging and labeling regulations do favor EU member goods however Bulgarias legal framework for this sector includes the Law on Wine and Alcoholic Beverages adopted in 1999 promulgated in State Gazette 861999 and entered into force on January 1 2000 which aligned Bulgaria with the EU wine law and thus made Bulgarian wine accessible to EU market specifically Germany without the restrictions which other non-EU competitors face German
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