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80% growth in organic and biodynamic wines. Host country Spain posts an increase of nearly 25%.

Nine thousand and eighty (9,080) wine samples have been entered this year in the Concours Mondial de Bruxelles (CMB), marking an average increase of more than 5% per year over the past 10 years (2007 –  2017). The growth can be ascribed to two main trends. First, the surge in global wine production combined with consumption stability and the continued growth in volume and value[1]. The second is greater international awareness of CMB and the recognized value of its medals.

50 wine producing countries will take part in this year’s CMB. The top ten countries by number of entries (in descending order) are: France, Spain, Italy, Portugal, Chile, China, South Africa, Bulgaria, Switzerland, Greece[2] and Slovakia.

According to the International Organisation of Vine and Wine (OIV), the three main European producing countries in 2016 were Italy, France and Spain. This is mirrored in the list of entries to CMB, which ranks these countries in the top three.

France continues to be leading participant at CMB despite the fact that both consumption and production decreased in 2016 in comparison to 2015[3].  The host country Spain ranks second for entries with an increase of over 23% compared with last year.

Entries from China posted an increase of 112.5% compared to 2016, and nearly 250% since 2015. CMB medals are highly valued in China. “Some Chinese distributors require a wine to have won a medal at an international competition before adding it to their portfolios. Wine makers see awards as an opportunity to enter new markets, which prompts them to participate”, said Thomas Costenoble, CMB managing director. China’s wine production and consumption are constantly on the rise. According to OIV, China’s vineyard area is the second largest in the world, preceded only by Spain.

Two new countries entered the competition for the first time in 2017: Azerbaijan and Andorra.

For two years in a row, Bulgaria has been the leading Eastern European country for the number of entries. The country dropped two places this year in comparison to 2016 when it hosted the competition. Nevertheless, Bulgaria still ranks in the top ten, outnumbering some popular wine making countries.

The competition’s organizers report tremendous growth of more than 80 % in organic and biodynamic wine entries over the last three years.

CMB director Thomas Costenoble sees this as a result of strong consumer interest in both categories: “Over the last few years, consumers have shown an increased awareness of the origin and production methods for wines, thus increasingly favoring organic and local products. Recognizing this market development, we decided to introduce a new category dedicated to organic and biodynamic wines. The first “Organic Wine Trophy” by Concours Mondial de Bruxelles will be awarded this year.”

2017 CMB entries will be judged by 320 journalists, buyers, oenologists and sommeliers from 50+ countries around the world. The 24th CMB will be held from May 5 to 7, 2017, in Valladolid, Spain.

CMB is the only touring competition in the world, with 23 years’ experience.

A recent informal survey among judges showed that the post-event checks of the awarded wines are among the competition’s main distinguishing features. CMB is the only wine competition to perform such quality control tests.

[1]According to the OIV’s latest report, April 2017
[2]Greece and Switzerland submitted an equal number of entries and rank joint ninth
[3]OIV statistics