Vinexpo Asia-Pacific has seen visitor numbers rise by 40%, underlining the growing thirst for wine and spirits in South-East Asia, according to the exhibition's organisers.

The three-day show, which ended today (27 May) in Hong Kong, attracted more than 12,000 visitors, organisers said.

The figure is well below the 46,000 visitors who attended Vinexpo Bordeaux last year, but growth of 40% on the last Vinexpo Asia-Pacific, held in Hong Kong in 2008, represents strong interest from Asian markets in both wine and spirits.

"Asia is now the most dynamic and happening market in the wine and spirits world," said Robert Beynat, CEO of Vinexpo.

"The total volume of wine consumption is increasing four times faster than the world average and is expected to continue in the next five years. Furthermore, Asia-Pacific accounts for 50.6% of total world spirits consumption."

Hériard Dubreuil, chairwoman of Vinexpo Asia-Pacific and also of Remy Cointreau, added: "The exhibitors were extremely impressed with the quality of the professional contacts they have made here, as well as the noticeable improvement in their knowledge and appreciation of wine and spirits. We firmly believe that this will help stimulate growth of the industry in the region and ultimately benefit the consumer.”