Milan Jezic von Gesseneck    2017-07-03

Moldovan wine for the European market


Regional, Agriculture


EU and EBRD open up trade opportunities for winery Vinaria din Vale

Moldova’s wine-makers are only partly known in European countries. And yet they can look back on a proud 4,000-year-old tradition of cultivating grapes in the country’s river valleys.

It is thus not a surprise that Moldova boasts some enormous wine cellars, including the world’s largest, Milestii Mici, covering an area of 200km of subterranean galleries – putting any sci-fi, life underground fantasies to shame. Yuri Gagarin,the cosmonaut and first man in space, stayed for a tasting in neighbouring Cricova, supposedly re-emerging only two days later.

“Our wines are very well known locally,” said Alexandr Rudenko, Director of Vinaria din Vale. “We hope to gain the same recognition around the globe in the near future.”

So where, if you’ll pardon the pun, are the bottle-necks? Why do only those business-travellers, tourists and eastern European enthusiasts in-the-know know about Moldovan wine? How can it conquer the world?

Modern marketing for export markets

“It is naïve to think that people will magically know about us,” said Mr Rudenko. “We realised that our company needed expert support in the area of marketing and turned to the EBRD for help.”

The EBRD’s Advice for Small Business worked with Vinaria din Vale to improve the marketing of its wines. It brought the company into contact with a local expert, who analysed its existing and upcoming competition.

He also created a website to present Vinaria din Vale’s vines to the outside world and to sell them, through online sales.

1,500 people have visited the website every month since its launch. Many of them were European exporters, so that the company was able to develop new business partnerships.

“There are many export opportunities for Moldovan businesses – now more than ever, since Moldova signed a free trade agreement with the EU a few years ago,” said Veronica Arpintin from the EBRD. ■