Romanian Wine: A Growing Opportunity

EBRD EE outlook on Romania

Read the latest Outlook on Romania 2017 special report


Romanian wine is a hidden gem, waiting to be discovered by many export markets, says Paul Murden, managing director of Halewood Wines & Spirits Romania. He spoke to Eva Keller about opportunities in the Romanian wine production sector.

Halewood first arrived in Romania 30 years ago. What changes have you seen in the wine sector over the last three decades?

I must admit that the evolution of the wine market in Romania has really surprised me, in the past 30 years, particularly the fast pace of this process compared to other economic sectors in the country. Obviously, for such a long period, we are referring to many factors, but we should particularly mention the development of modern retailing, the internet and, last but not least, the foreign investment in this sector.

One noticeable aspect is the evolution of consumer interest in wine. After several years, when there was a negative international perception of the Romanian wine market in terms of wine quality, and consumers were less-educated in terms of wine consumption, we are now facing a more educated consumer and an improved wine quality, as confirmed by the international markets. This results in a highly dynamic and competitive market.

So, Halewood has invested €10 million in Romania. What opportunities do you see for foreign investors in the wine sector in Romania?

Well, Romanian wine is a hidden gem waiting to be discovered by many export markets. We already export substantial volumes to the UK, Germany and China, to name but a few. As more and more consumers become aware of the quality price ratio demonstrated by Romanian wines then I am sure this demand will increase exponentially.

The natural landscape, soil, and climate in Romania is unique and, being on the 45th latitude, it is ideal for the continued development and growth of the Romanian wine industry. There is also the opportunity to develop wine tourism within a country that is one of the most beautiful and naturally preserved parts of Europe.

The population is innovative, professional and passionate about wine. There is a huge knowledge base and experience of wine making in Romania, in fact wine has been produced here for more than 6,000 years.

So, tell me, what challenges is the sector currently facing?

I would say there is a constant pressure on production costs, on the producer’s margin and a high consumer sensitivity towards price changes.

What prospects do you see for the Romanian wine sector and the company in the future? 

In the past years, we have worked very hard. We made massive investments in developing the Tohani region and this year we will continue to invest in our winery in Ploiesti, a city we are very closely tied to.

halewood wine
(photo: Halewood)

We will continue investing in upgrading our production facilities and modernising the wineries and the equipment, in order to ensure a premium quality for all our wines. We will continue investing on the domestic market through both an innovation of our sales force and through targeting consumer marketing. We are in a complete process of portfolio expansion so we may best assure our clients’ business development. We are preparing new brand launches in the wine category that will address market opportunities. These new launches will reflect both the heritage that Halewood has in Romania, as well as the quality of our wines, which has often been endorsed by international contests.

Regarding the spirits’ portfolio, and given that Halewood Wines & Spirits UK is the largest independent spirits producer and that there is a new focus on the spirits mixology, we are continually developing our portfolio with crafted products, such as crafted gin, whiskey, vodka and beer. All these launches are designed to strengthen our position within the market, as we expect the market growth in Romania to outperform other markets.


Romgaz and GE Partner in a New Power Project

romania GE

Driving the Romanian Automotive Industry

opel romania

Office Real-Estate Is Burgeoning in Romania

romania office space emerging europe

Robust First-Quarter Growth in Romania

emerging europe romania brasov

Poland and Romania: Almost 100 Years of Friendship That Is Still Growing

warsaw poland emerging europe

A Family Between Britain and Romania

london emerging europe

Can Romania’s success last longer?

brasov adecco emerging europe

Romania Could Catch Up in Innovation

innovation emerging europe

Romania’s Short-Term Prospects Remain Solid

romania economist

Romania Can Foster German Partnership

frankfurt emerging europe

Romania’s Economic Outlook Is Bright

Different Romanian Lei Banknotes on the table

Privatisation, Past and Present in Romania

energy privatisation romania emerging europe

Romania’s 140 Years of UK Cooperation

Surprising Resilience of Romanian Social-Democrats

BUCHAREST ROMANIA - June 21 2017: Liviu Dragnea President of Social Democrat Party speaks in front of Parliament during a no-confidence vote against Sorin Grindeanu's Cabinet.

Nurturing a Needed Knowledge and Innovation Culture

It cluster cluj

Romania’s Infrastructure Development Is Slow

roads romania

Alexandru Petrescu: Romania Is Working to Solidify the Highest Growth Rate in Europe

BUCHAREST ROMANIA - MAY 1: Unidentified people relax and socialize in the green area of the Promenada Mall on May 1 2014 in Bucharest Romania. The mall has a gross floor area of approx. 110000 m.

Merging and Growing Romania’s Outstanding Broadband and Other Infrastructures

electrogrup emerging europe

People Power Reminds the Government of the Rule of Law

The Competitive Edge in Central and Eastern Europe

SOFIA BULGARIA - MAY 5: View of the Ivan Vazov National Theatre in Sofia on May 5 2016. Sofia is the largest city and capital of Bulgaria.

Romania’s Government Plans to Grow the Country’s Already High ICT Reputation

romania ICT emerging europe

It’s Time for Romania to Roar

outsourcing romania emerging europe global sourcing association

20 Years of Romanian-US Cooperation

usa romania emerging europe

Romania in 2017 in Brief

romania emerging europe

Romania To Stay Close After Brexit

Greg Hands

Romania’s EU Membership Was Slow to Be Appreciated But Now the Tide Is Turning

Romanian Palace Of Parliament

The Bucharest Stock Exchange Has Started the Year on a Promising Note

stock exchange bucharest

Princess Marina Sturdza: Things Are Bound to Improve for Romania

Central square in Iasi town Moldavia Romania

Romanian Upgrade to Emerging Market is on the Cards

Romania capital market

Romanian Wine Is Making a Comeback

Building on CEE’s Established Reputation for Quality and Value

Risky (but Rewarding) Business

risky business

Romanian IT Business Statistics Are Promising

ANIS romanian ICT

Romania Needs to Follow its EU Membership With Some Sweeping Reforms to Avoid Stagnation

Bucharest Romania - March 07 2016: Bucharest Sky Tower Business Center. Bucharest urban landscape.

Seven Reasons for Optimism in Romania

gazelle emerging europe romania

Romania’s European Values Are Changing Public Misinformed Opinions

world bank emerging europe

Romania — Decades After Two Milestones

View of Palace of Parliament in Bucharest Romania

Romania Works to Cement its Position in the EU

european union

Romania Says No to Corruption

Corruption romania

Juncker’s “More, Together” Offers Romania a Better Future

aspen institute romania emerging europe

Romanian Market Moving Towards Rebalancing

Romania Will Be a Hot Topic in Europe

What Was First on the Romanian Table?

food romania dragut emerging europe

Political In-fighting Must Be Resolved

Sorin Grindeanu

Changing Perspectives and Showing That True Romania is a Vibrant Innovative Country

Romanian Banks Must Use Lessons Learned

romania emerging europe banks

A Country of Beauty and Warmth That Will Reward Those Who Visit With an Open Mind

Cityscape Brasov

The Goal for Romania — the Positives Outweigh the Negatives

ebrd emerging europe romania

Netherlands and Romania’s Love-Match Continues

romania netherlands emerging europe
  1. Mr. Murden has made clear a very important fact, that Romanian wine history expands over thousands of years. I have noticed a general tendency for our generation to judge Romanian wine in terms of a lifetime experience. This means to only refer to the communist period and the years after. In my opinion, the Romanian wine industry is recovering from one of many downturns in history, this one caused by Communism with its state-owned property, others being caused by phylloxera or even the fall of the Roman Empire.
    Another important point in the article is related to the natural conditions, Romania being “one of the most beautiful and naturally preserved parts of Europe”.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *