Organisers of the London International Wine Fair have said that they remain confident for 2010, despite withdrawals of several high-profile wine companies, including Constellation Brands and E&J Gallo Winery.

Constellation Europe and Gallo, producers of the top two wine brands in the UK by value, will not take stands at this year's show. 

"This is part of our strategy to deliver future growth and profitability by reducing costs in the business," a Constellation spokesperson said today (23 February). The Hardys producer will, however, appear at Germany's Prowein show in March.

The news has led to fears that high-profile pullouts could jeopardise the success of the London International Wine Fair (LIWF) 2010.

Will Broadfoot, who works for LIWF organiser body Brintex and is marketing director for the show, told just-drinks that he remains confident.

"Of course we would like to see Constellation and Gallo on the floorplan for 2010, but the reality is that big names dip in and out of major trade events all the time depending on their own agendas.

"On the other side of the coin, however, we're delighted to see so much growth, from both new and old world, right across the Fair, and with new regions and new exhibitors being added all the time, the LIWF will without doubt be the global business event for the international wine trade in May."

While Constellation and Gallo sit out 2010, Brintex has revealed to just-drinks that Pernod Ricard will increase its stand size by 50% this year. French wine firm JeanJean, recently renamed Advini, will double its stand size, as part of an increased presence for 'old world' countries overall.

"The thirtieth London International Wine Fair will see significant growth for many international pavilions, as well as increased presence for several UK agents," said Brintex.

Several countries, including Germany, Austria, Argentina and Chile are set to have larger national stands at this year's show.

Constellation said that its decision to stay away in 2010 "is based on current economics and is not a reflection on the quality of the London International Wine Fair".