France needs a UK body

21 March, 2008

France needs a single generic body ­representing it in the UK if it is to reassert itself as the number one supplier of wine to the UK market, industry figures have said.

Speakers at the France Under One Roof Thierry's debate this week said having individual regions represented by ­different PR companies and organisations is detrimental to the image of French wine.

OLN wine editor at large Tim Atkin (MW) said: "Why can't we have a Wines from France body in the UK? Somebody like a Michael Cox (Wines of Chile) figure who will speak for France and represent it. France needs somebody to give it direction."

Katie Jones, sales & marketing director at Mont Tauch, added: "For France to come back it would be good to see a French identity in the UK market and see France working as a whole to push the segment."

Matthew Dickinson, commercial director of Thierry's, agreed the move was needed and said wine bodies from other countries like Chile and Argentina had achieved a great deal on "minuscule budgets" but said political differences in the winemaking regions of France meant it was unlikely to happen.

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