The shipment left Southampton docks on Friday (19 Aug) following a partnership between drinks exporter The British Bottle Company and New Jersey-based Vine Street Imports.
The 20-foot container was loaded with twelve different wines from across the country, including Digby Fine English, Hush Heath Estate, Bolney Wine Estate and Camel Valley.
Demand for English bubbles now reaches all corners of the globe. From China to Hong Kong, the USA to India, leading brands are now rivalling the very best French champagne.
The deal marks an important step towards fulfilling UK wine producers’ recent commitment to achieve a tenfold increase in exports of English wine by 2020, helping to increase their value to over £30m.
Environment secretary Andrea Leadsom said: “The English wine industry is going from strength to strength thanks to the innovation and hard work of our wine growers.
“It's not just our amazing Team GB making gold in Rio - our English wine producers are creating some of the best wines in the world, winning gold after gold at prestigious international awards.
“It’s fantastic to see our vintners flying the flag for British produce and today’s milestone shows our wine trade is very much open for business and in high demand across the globe.”
Julia Trustram Eve, marketing director of English Wine Producers, the marketing arm of the UK wine industry, added: “As the reputation of English wine attracts ever more global attention the USA is a clear priority market for exports.
“These four producers are joining other English wineries now exporting to the US, which include Ridgeview, Chapel Down, Wiston, Gusbourne, Hambledon and Hattingley Valley.
“This deal is a significant milestone as it will be the largest shipment of English wines to any international market.”
The wines will be distributed to specialist retailers and restaurants across nine states initially: New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Illinois, Washington DC, Massachusetts, Georgia, Montana and Maryland.
This first container will be followed by further shipments from The British Bottle Company portfolio in the coming months.
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