Ampelografía italiana (varietales) - Revista El Conocedor

In the article Italy and its commercial relationship with the world, we talk about the main products that this country exports to the world, and wine is one of the most representative of the nation, since it is part of the daily life of a large part of the Italian population, and it is distinguished by its high quality and variety.

In November 2020, the European Statistical Office, EUROSTAT, released the most recent data on the main exporters and importers of wine in the European Union (EU), indicating that in 2019 the production of wine sold (including sparkling wine, port and grape must) in the EU was around 16 billion liters. The largest wine producers were Italy, Spain, and France, followed by Portugal, Germany, and Hungary.

In that year, Italy was the main wine exporter, with exports of 1.1 billion liters, which represents 34% of the wine exports of the EU Member States. It was followed by France (800 million liters, 25%) and Spain (700 million liters, 22%).

According to ITC (2021), during 2020, Italy represented 21.1% of world wine exports. The country exported $ 7.1 billion dollars (bd) to the world; Its first export destination was the United States with $ 1.6 bd, followed by Germany with $ 1.2 bd, the United Kingdom with $ 877 million dollars (md), and Switzerland with $ 437 md. In that same year, Italy exported $ 45 md to Mexico.

Wine Regions of Italy

In Italy, there are about 900 thousand registered vineyards, about 20 wine regions, approximately one thousand different varieties of grapes, more than 300 wine areas classified as DOCs (Denominazioni de Origine Controlata), 21 areas classified DOCGs (Denominazione di Origine Controlata e Garantita), and around 50 thousand wineries (of all sizes) producing different types of wines, most of which are produced for local consumption and do not leave the country (many of them excellent artisanal wines and signature wines).

The wine regions of Italy are distributed as follows:

Wine quality system

In 1963, the Italian government instituted a system of denomination di origini, or appellation of origin, based roughly on the French system of appelation d'origine controlée. Until recently, only 10% of the huge Italian wine vintages were regulated by wine laws. Today, the situation has begun to change as the reforms approved in 1992, known as the Goria law, gradually take effect and incorporate more wines into the various categories.

Quality categories

According to the Italian Ministry of Agricultural, Food, and Forest Policies, in Italy, wine is divided into two categories: quality wine (DOCG and DOC) and table wine (IGT and VdT).

  • Denominazioni de Origine Controllata e Garantita (DOCG). This superior level of Italian wine began as a more rigid form of DOC and as a recognition of the best Italian wines. Only 15 wines have obtained DOCG status.
  • Denominazioni de Origine Controllata (DOC). This category applies to wines made from specified grape varieties, grown in specific areas. In a way, DOC regulations serve to preserve existing traditions (traditions established during the years after World War II).
  • Indicazione Geografica Tipica (IGT). An Italian version of the French category vin de pays. Wines can use a geographic description on the label followed by the name of a variety.
  • Vino de Tavola (VdT). This is the most basic classification, and no geographic or variety distinction can be made on the label.

La calidad del vino italiano - Revista Maxi Online

Final Considerations

Wine is a representative product of Italy since it is part of the daily life of its citizens and is characterized by a great variety and high quality. Despite of the high consumption in the country, in 2019 Italy was the main exporter of wine worldwide, and in 2020 the second, only after France.

Something characteristic of the wine industry in Italy is its quality system since it is a country that has a great variety of grapes and wine regions, which leads it to establish the two main categories of quality wines and table wines.

According to ICEX, Mexico has been, in recent years, the North American country with the second-highest world growth rate in consumption, according to the International Organization of Vine and Wine, with interannual increases of 8% in periods before to 2020. In addition, Mexicans consume 0.8 liters per person per year, which classifies the country as the seventh with the highest consumption of wine per capita in Latin America. On the other hand, because of the increase in consumption habits in the domestic environment and the familiarization of consumers with ecommerce as a purchasing channel, online sales are emerging as a fundamental pillar for the future of wine.

In the words of Carlos Blancas Sánchez, general director of the company Servicios de Gestión en Información Comercial, wines shall comply with the NOM 142-SSA1 / SCFI-2014 on alcoholic beverages, sanitary specifications, sanitary and commercial labeling since it is a mandatory norm in the national territory for businesses and people that import and sell alcoholic beverages. It should be noted that the basis of the successful growth of the wine industry in our country is the safety and quality offered to the final consumer.

For this reason, we recommend Mexican companies that intend to import Italian wines, consider conducting a prior review at origin, since this allows the importer to prevent shipping in a damaged container, confirm labeling and compliance with local regulations and provisions in the country. of destiny.

Since 2021, through the Container Loading Supervision service, SBE has provided importers in Mexico and Italy with qualitative and quantitative tools in optimal times, allowing them to make early decisions and prevent economic, commercial, and legal risks, thus becoming a strategic ally in the supply chain and regulatory and commercial compliance.


Eurostat. (2020). Wine production and trade in the EU. Retrieved from:

Hogar de vinos. (s.f.). Italia. Retrieved from:

ICEX. (2021). Estudio de mercado. El mercado del vino en México 2021. Recuperado de:

ITC. (2021). List of exporters for the selected product in 2020. Retrieved from:

Ministero delle politiche agricole alimentari e forestali. (2021). Disciplinari dei vini DOP e IGP italiani. Retrieved from: