FUTURE Wine & Spirit Brand, a new entrant into the country’s fast-growing wine market, is planning to launch over the next few months a range of fruit-based wines in select urban centres across western, northern and southern India.
The company’s senior Vice-President, Mr Hans Raj Ahuja, told Business Line that those who were fond of having a glass of wine in the evening could now look forward to some really fruitful times what with the company now manufacturing peach, plum and apple wines under the brand name `Sutter House’.
“It is for the first time that such a product is being launched in the country,” Mr Ahuja said, adding that the company’s wine basket would also offer apple cider, yet another new concept in the market.
The company, promoted by NRIs with interests in large liquor retail chains in New York, has set up a winery with a capacity of half-a-million bottles annually at Himachal Pradesh where the raw material for fruit wines is available in abundance.
Future Wine is also simultaneously importing and selling select South African wines in India and has planned a phased roll out of these products beginning with Delhi and Pune in June, Chennai in July, and Goa in August. Bangalore city will also see the wines being launched in the next three months.
Mr Ahuja said the company would also target the overseas market with the range of fruit wines and pointed out that it had already received enquiries for the product from companies in Sri Lanka and Mauritius.
“The focus will, however, be on catering to the domestic market which has a large potential, especially now that people are becoming more aware of the pleasures of wine drinking,” Mr Ahuja said.
The Indian wine market is currently estimated at three million bottles in terms of consumption every year, which is way below the consumption pattern in other countries. “The market has been growing at the rate of 20 per cent annually and I expect this to continue for the next four to five years,” he said.
The company, which is also manufacturing Scotch-blended whisky under the `Evening Salute’ brand in Punjab, is planning to roll out fruit-flavoured rum and vodka under the brand name `Waterford’.