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Office of Governor Gary Locke
Contact:  Governor's Communications Office, 360-902-4136
Alt Contact:  Michelle Zahrly, Department of Community, Trade and Economic Development, 360-725-4019

Gov. Gary Locke Announces Major Shipment of Washington Wines to China

Gov. Gary Locke today announced a major shipment of Washington wines to China. The governor’s most recent trade mission to China last year is credited with helping create the opportunity for the sale.

“This is further proof that our trade missions yield results. They create jobs for Washington workers and opportunities for Washington businesses and farmers,” Locke said. “This is also further proof that our award-winning Washington wines are among the world’s best.”

China Pacific Group, Inc. (CPG), a Seattle-based corporation, owns Richland Hills Cellars in the Yakima Valley. Today, the company shipped a 20-ft. chilled container of Richland Hills wines from the Port of Tacoma to the Port of Tianjin in China. It’s expected to arrive in China on May 15. The amount of wine in the container is roughly 700 cases – 300 cases of Merlot, 300 of Cabernet Sauvignon and 100 cases of Chardonnay. That amounts to about 8,400 bottles. It’s the company’s first shipment of Washington wines to China.

CPG Chairman and President Jackson Tse accompanied the governor on his most recent trade mission to China last year. Tse supplied Richland Hills wines to the governor to use as gifts from Washington state to Chinese officials.

“I wish to thank the governor, his staff, and members of the Washington State Department of Agriculture (WSDA) and the state Department of Community, Trade and Economic Development (CTED) for their great support and promotion of Washington state wines in China and Asia Pacific,” Tse said.

Larry Williams, CTED’s Assistant Director of International Trade, said, “This is an excellent example of the market potential for Washington state products and services in China. Jackson Tse and the China Pacific Group continue to be excellent promoters for Washington products and we congratulate them on their success.”

Valoria Loveland, WSDA director, who accompanied the governor on the China trade mission, said, “Governor Locke has done a great job promoting Washington products. His trade missions have always resulted in increased sales for our state’s growers. We now export Washington wine to more than 40 countries, so clearly our reputation as a quality wine-producing state is well known.”

Tse said CPG is dedicated to promoting Washington’s premium wines in Asia Pacific. The company plans to ship five or more containers of Washington wines to China and other countries in Asia Pacific in the coming months. The wines to be exported will include Richland Hills as well as Washington Hills, Avery Lane and other wineries in the state. Tse said Washington wines are being sold to fine restaurants, hotels and wine specialty retailers in Beijing, Shanghai and other major cities in China.

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