French president Emmanuel Macron apparently wooed Chinese president Xi Jinping with a Languedoc wine on his three-day visit to China this week, where the two countries agreed to deepen trade relations and protect product of origins.
The French president and Xi visited the second edition of Import Expo in Shanghai, and together they tried three different wines, namely a Bordeaux, a Burgundy and a Languedoc red, according to accounts by Miren de Lorgeril, owner of Southern France’s Maison Lorgeril, on her LinkedIn.
According to her, Xi complimented the Languedoc wine and said, it was “to his taste”.
Macron also confirmed Xi’s love for the wine. “I felt that he was discovering Languedoc wine, that he didn’t know it, that he appreciated it,” said Macron. “He tasted the three meats, so Charentaise, Limousine and Salers have good days in China, I hope the Chinese market will take them over”.
The wine is reportedly produced from Narbonne by Gérard Bertrand, and this is likely to give a boost to Languedoc’s awareness and sales within China. A Napa Cabernet by Girard winery that Xi drank at a state dinner with Trump was shot to fame with brisk sales even after punitive tariffs slapped on American wines.
Macron is expected to use the trip to further expand access to the Chinese market for French companies, including for wineries whose exports to China suffered significant drops in recent months.
This also led France to lose its place as China’s top wine importing country this year to Australia, which enjoys Free Trade Agreement with Beijing.
The two countries will also sign an accord to protect French products of origins such as Champagne, Bordeaux and cheese to name a few in an effort to fight counterfeit products. The list will cover 100 European products.
Languedoc produces roughly 40% of France’s total wine volume, and it consists of 30% of French wines exported to China.