The French wine industry is fighting back against the onslaught from the New World. The UK trade office Sopexa is launching a generic campaign to revitalise interest in French wines in this country. They still have the greatest share of the UK market but Australia is not far behind and is growing its share faster. Sopexa is taking a two pronged approach. It is aiming to stimulate trade interest and build its confidence in French wines, and at the same time encourage consumer curiosity by making the wines more accessible. It has created the French Wine Awards for Excellence with two categories, one for the best new product and the other for the on-trade personality of the year. It is organising the French Wines Trade Week on October 23-26 which will have a range of activities. The consumer campaign will target upmarket 25 to 45-year-old wine drinkers with consumer sampling at major shows around the country from October until December. The sampling will feature wines from all over France and is supported by regional press and local radio stations. The French Wines Experience website will be launched this week. {{DRINKS }}

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