Marquee Selections will handle Backsberg Estates wine portfolio in the US

Marquee Selections will handle Backsberg Estate's wine portfolio in the US

Kansas City wine importer Marquee Selections has announced a new US distribution deal with South Africa's Backsberg Estate Wines.

The deal, which began on 1 April, will continue bringing Backsberg's carbon-neutral wines into the US, the two companies confirmed today (10 April). Backsberg, which is available in almost 20 countries including the UK, China and Germany, was previously distributed in the US by Frederick Wildman & Sons.

Backsberg marketing and exports manager Simon Back said the deal with Marquee, which specialises in environmentally-friendly wines, was a good match.

"We didn't make a go of it with Wildman," Back told just-drinks. "Marquee is not a huge company and for us as a family business it is a good fit."

Marquee will launch a range of Backsberg products, including traditional premium wines, a line of kosher wines and the Tread Lightly PET-packaged line.

Backsberg is the only carbon-neutral winery in South Africa and also pioneered the use of the light-weight PET wine bottles in the country.

Looking forward, Back said the company would focus on imports to Asia instead of its more traditional European market. "Asia has a lot of potential so we are focusing on these areas" he said. "Unfortunately, you can no longer rely on Europe as a market, so we are looking to the US and Asia for sales growth."

Many companies use PET bottles as a green alternative to glass. However, a 2010 study in France claimed to show that white wine was significantly altered after just six months in bag-in-box, mono PET and PET multi vessels.