Languedoc Roussillon wine co-operative Vignobles Foncaileu has acquired local trader Club des Vignerons and with it an important opening to the French domestic market.

Financial details behind the transaction were not disclosed.

Foncalieu posted a 2008 turnover of EUR36m (US$53.8m), with over 80% of its volume of 18.5m bottles bound for foreign markets. In contrast, Club des Vignerons (10m bottles) generates 80% of its sales in France, the major customers for its Languedoc and Côtes du Rhône wines being supermarket chains.

Meanwhile, further consolidation in the region has seen Vignobles Bonfils (EUR29m turnover in 2008) acquire trader Bessière, which went into administration earlier this year, for EUR1.75m.

Bonfils will increase its annual volume from 16m bottles to around 30m bottles following the deal, which also includes Bessière's 12,000 units per hour bottling facility.

Bonfils acquired trader Maurel-Vedeau in 2006 and organic wine producer Montfreux de Fages in 2007.