Portugal’s wine globalization waves, 1750-2015
From 1750 to 2015 we may detect three waves of globalization of wines produced in Portugal, namely, port wine exports for the British market in the 18th century, common wines exports to France in the second half of the 19th century, and finally the growth of exports to European markets from the last decade of the 20th century up to the present times. This chapter explores the fundamentals of such waves looking at trends in output, productivity, domestic and foreign consumption, commercial agreements and economic policies. The first two waves came to halt as conditions in the foreign markets changed, because they did not have a solid domestic base of production and commercialization. The chapter argues that the third wave is of a different kind as it developed from a more solid domestic base of the wine sector that had developed for decades based on domestic consumption. Thus we may conclude that wine globalization is also about changing domestic economic conditions. The process was however long and painful, as the sector had a very irregular performance throughout the 20th century which is however related to the overall backwardness of the Portuguese economy in the European context.
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