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​Joint televised show highlights exchanges

Time:2022-11-18 14:48:28

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Xinghuacun Fenjiu Group joined hands with the Austrian National Tourist Office and the Austrian embassy in China in hosting a televised exchange event in Beijing in late October, aiming to promote exchanges in the alcoholic beverage industry in both countries and make the unique products and culture of the famed Shanxi distillery brand known to the Austrian people.

At the show, the Austrian National Tourist Office's officials, Dieter Scharf and Barbara Stark, as well as Michael Berger, economic and commercial counselor at the Austrian embassy in China, were treated to a dinner composed of food from both countries, Austrian wines and white liquor from Xinghuacun Fenjiu.

Guests from Austria and Xinghuacun Fenjiu executives introduced the products, and history and culture of alcoholic beverages of both countries.

An executive of Xinghuacun Fenjiu talked about the long history and rich cultural influences of the company's products.

He said China has an alcoholic beverage production history of about 6,000 years. That is according to an archaeological discovery made at the site where today's Xinghuacun Fenjiu is located.

Findings there included alcoholic beverage making and storage utensils with a distinctive feature of Yangshao Culture, an ancient civilization in the middle reaches of the Yellow River which flourished between 5,000 and 7,000 years ago.

The discoveries proved that Xinghuacun township in the Shanxi city of Fenyang, where Xinghuacun Fenjiu is headquartered, might be the source of China's alcoholic beverage industry.

Xinghuacun began to make white liquor, or baijiu, in the Tang Dynasty (618-907). That was when Xinghuacun became popular in China thanks to a poem by renowned poet Du Mu.

In the poem called Qingming, Du described his mood during a trip on Qingming, or Tomb Sweeping Day, in April. In Chinese, Xinghuacun literally means apricot flower village.

"A drizzling rain falls like tears on the Qingming day.

The traveler's heart is going to break on the way.

Where can a wine shop be found to drown his dismay?

A cowherd points to the apricot flower village far away."

The poem is so popular in China that almost all school children are able to recite it. So its popularity has also made the white liquor brand a household name.

Fenjiu began to attract the attention of international buyers in 1915 after it won the first prize at the Panama Pacific International Expo, which was held in San Francisco. It began to be sold overseas on a large scale in the years to follow.

To date, Xinghuacun Fenjiu's products have been sold to more than 60 countries and regions, through its 50-plus overseas dealers.

The company's latest data show it reported business revenue of 22.1 billion yuan ($3.1 billion) in the first nine months of the year, up 28 percent year-on-year. Its net profit increased 42 percent to 7 billion yuan during the same period.

Li Shu contributed to this story.

The TV show produced by Xinghuacun Fenjiu and Austrian institutions is aimed at exchanges between the alcoholic beverage industries of both countries. WEN ZHAOYAN/FOR CHINA DAILY

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