"California wines continue to grow in popularity with both trade and consumers in the Canadian market," according to Rick Slomka, Wine Institute Trade Director for Canada. "Some of the recent growth comes from new brands with eye-catching labels and clever names. Also contributing to this growth is the ongoing strength of the Canadian dollar which has made California wines more competitive compared to wines from other major wine regions. Our continued success with premium wines in the Quebec market and in LCBO VINTAGES, indicates that Canadian consumers see good value in California at all price points," said Slomka.

"In a challenging economy, the UK wine market does not stand still, and new sectors and opportunities have arisen. California has been responsive to these, and has built on the bedrock of its major branded wines with successes in the independent retail sector and on-trade outlets. Growth in these areas introduces our wines to new audiences, and enables California to demonstrate its diversity at higher price points. This growth is by no means exhausted, and augurs well for the future here," said John McLaren, Wine Institute Trade Director for the United Kingdom.

"California wines fared well in most European countries. In Sweden for instance, sales growth of California wines were the highest of all wine supplying countries in Sweden. The story was similar in Germany, where California again experienced the highest growth rate of all wine exporting countries. However, a significant portion of California wine imported into Germany is re-exported and actually sold in other European markets. Additionally, as a word of caution, the 10 percent change in the Euro/Dollar exchange rate of the past few months may have an effect on exports to Europe in early 2012," said Paul Molleman, Wine Institute's Trade Director for Continental Europe.

"The outlook in the world's emerging wine markets remains positive as most markets continued to post strong gains in 2011. Hong Kong remained California's third largest export market by value, although growth slowed to 39 percent from 150 percent in 2010 compared to 2009. China's growth remained buoyant at 42 percent compared to 2010 and is now the fifth largest export market by value, up two places from last year. Vietnam posted the strongest year-over-year gains (+266 percent) among the top 25 markets. Elsewhere, there is significant optimism in South Korea due to the recent ratification of the Korea-U.S. Free Trade Agreement and in Mexico where the 20 percent import tax on California wines was repealed in late October 2011," commented Eric Pope, Wine Institute's Regional Director, Emerging Markets.

"U.S. bulk wine exports to Japan have been growing as major Japanese importers are now importing popular-priced California wine brands in bulk and bottling in Japan. This reduces the burdensome import duty to a certain extent and makes inventory control easier. As per bottled U.S. wine, Japan is now importing more expensive California wines than in the past. Unlike other new world wine exporting countries, California wine is well represented at high-end restaurants because of our successful annual restaurant promotion," reported Wine Institute Trade Director in Japan, Ken-ichi Hori.