Chile has posted a marked leap in wine exports for the first seven months of this year.

The Agriculture Ministry's Office of Agrarian Studies and Policies (ODEPA) said yesterday (30 August) that exports of wine between January and July were up by 35% on the corresponding period a year earlier, hitting US$545.7m in value terms.

In terms of volume, meanwhile, exports increased by 28% to 176.6m litres of denomination of origin wines, ODEPA noted.

The UK maintained the top spot of Chilean wine importing countries, accounting for 20% of the country's exports. The US came in second with 14%, with Germany, The Netherlands and Canada making up the top five.

Last month, 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.