Foster's Group has confirmed that it has stopped exporting some of its wines to some markets due to allocations being targeted at specific regions that are more profitable.

Speaking to just-drinks today (4 March) a spokesperson from Foster's said "Certain wines sell better in different markets. Consumers differ around the world, so the wines are highly allocated." The spokesperson declined to give specific details of the allocating process.

Foster's Wine Estates' European business managing director Peter Jackson was recently cited by UK press as saying that, since the film Sideways, there has been a high demand for wines such as Pinot Noir in the UK.

"My allocations are a lot smaller than they used to be," he told the Financial Times. "Wine companies are allocating products far more to the most profitable markets."

The spokesperson added: "We split the world into three: Australia and Asia Pacific; the Americas; and EMEA - Europe, Middle East & Africa, which includes about 30 countries - some want a particular style, so it makes sense to allocate wines to specific countries."

Last month, the Australia-based drinks company said that net profit for the six months to the end of December was up by 6% year-on-year before significant items, coming in at A$398.6m (US$367.2m). Factoring in significant items, in particular the sale of Foster's breweries in India and Vietnam in the previous period, net profit attributable to Foster's shareholders came in 28% down on the A$553.5m reported in H1 2006. Net sales for the period slipped, meanwhile, by 0.5% to A$2.36bn, with the Americas region seeing sales fall by 32.2% to A$98.3m. Sales in Australia, Asia and Pacific were up by 14.1% to A$515.5m, meanwhile, with Europe, Middle East and Africa delivering sales growth of 16.5%, totalling A$45.1m.