Already in antique Greece, according to written reports, had a class of wine merchants in the early third century BC. They had their own professional title "oinogeustes" (wine taster) because the ability to taste was obviously a prerequisite. The Greek port Monemvasia on the Peloponnese peninsula was an important transshipment point, especially in the Middle Ages Sweet wines from across the Mediterranean. Has practiced for centuries England due to strong import France have a big impact on the taste of wine. Because of that champagne. clairet. port wine and sherry established as wine styles. France has always been one of the main wine suppliers for many countries.
Especially in the region Bordeaux Many large trading companies have sprung up because from here the transport mainly to England took place. Therefore the Bordeaux wine trade a very special historical meaning. The Négociants market around 70% of the wines produced here in this region. At the time of their great colonial empires and conquests in Overseas especially had the three countries England. Portugal. Spain and the city-state Venice great importance in the wine trade. The former naval power Netherlands from the beginning of the 17th century had a leading or decisive influence on the wine and spirits trade for over a hundred years and rose to become the world's largest trading power.
A distinction is made in trade in unfilled wines in large containers (tanks or barrels), which is generally called bulk wine (Barrel goods) is called, as well as the trade with bottles. The barrel goods are sold by winemakers and Winzergenossenschaften above all to the wine trade, as well as to wine and sparkling wine cellars for further processing. The most important sales forms for bottles are the supermarket, grocery, wine shop, Farmgate sales, Mail order (increasingly via the Internet) and gastronomy. The German company Hillebrand headquartered in Mainz-Hechtsheim (Rhineland-Palatinate) is the world's largest wine and beverage carrier. There are special forms of wine trading Auctions (also increasingly here via the Internet such as eBay) and subscriptions, that means advance sales before a wine is even produced (with special form "en Primeur"). Large changes resulted from the increasing in the 1980s globalization the wine markets with huge multinationals (see under largest wine companies in the world ).
The United States are the largest export market for European wine. Germany and, traditionally, England, the USA and China are the absolute leaders in imports. The top three exporting countries for a long time are Spain, Italy and France. In December 2005, a wine trade agreement with far-reaching ramifications between the United States and the EU was concluded; see the relevant section under the keyword wine law, In addition, a new EU wine market regime came into force in August 2009 with major changes in wine quality levels and wine names; see in detail under quality system, Regarding vineyards and wine quantities in all countries see under the keyword Wine production volumes,