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Exports of Swiss wine in 2007 disappoint

Wine exports last year were down by about 60 per cent compared with 2006, according to the Swiss agriculture information service.

It reported on Saturday that the reason for what it called the “massive slump” was declining orders from Switzerland’s main customer, Germany.

“By the end of September, only 560,000 litres of wine had been exported,” explained Othmar Stäheli, editor-in-chief of the Swiss Wine newspaper.

Since exports in the fourth quarter of the year normally increase by a maximum 20 per cent, Stäheli reckons on an export total of around 700,000 litres.

According to export statistics, Germany ordered only a quarter of the wine it had bought in 2006 from Switzerland.

The information service said that German discounter Aldi had not bought Swiss wine in 2007 – as it had in 2005 and 2006 – because it could not buy it at favourable prices.

The service added that while 2007 exports were not “rosy”, the quality of the wine harvest last year was among the best.

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SWI swissinfo.ch - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR