Chile has enjoyed a healthy lift in exports of wines with designation of origin (DO) in the first six months of this year.

In a report issued by the country's Oficina de Estudios y Politicas Agrarias (ODEPA) yesterday (24 July), exports of the wines registered a 34% leap on the corresponding period a year earlier, reaching US454.4m.

In volume terms, exports of DO wines rose by 27% to 147m litres, ODEPA noted.

As a varietal breakdown, Cabernet Sauvignon accounted for 33% of DO exports, with Merlot coming in second at 14%, just ahead of Sauvignon Blanc at 13%. Chardonnay accounted for 12%, with Carmenere (6%), Syrah (3%) and Pinot Noir (2%) making up the bulk of the numbers.

Geographically, the UK took 20% of DO exports in the period, ahead of the US with 14% and Germany with 6%. The Netherlands, Brazil and Canada took 5% share each, ahead of Denmark, Ireland and Russia with 4% each.

Earlier this week, the Chilean wine industry officially launched a new umbrella wine association, Vinos de Chile AG, which combines the trade associations of Viñas de Chile and Chilevid.