The chief organizer of the event was Tie Zhang, President of the US-China Business & Culture Association, which is a bilateral U.S. – China trade organization with offices in Sacramento, CA and Shanghai, China. The eight person delegation from Shanghai was led by the Director General of the Shanghai Wine Monopoly Management Bureau, Mr. Lu, Rong Hua. The delegation also included Ms. Hao, Yan Ming, Secretary General of the China (Shanghai) International Wine Expo.
When asked, “Why Lodi?” Tie Zhang made the following statement: “We choose to hold this summit in Lodi for a variety of reasons, including strong personal & business relationships, and because Lodi has ultra-high quality wines, medium prices and superior consistency and volume. Our extensive research has revealed that no other appellation in the United States is better suited for the Chinese market, which is the fastest growing imported wine market in the world.”
Lodi Chamber CEO Pat Patrick said “Lodi is the largest growing winegrape region in California, growing more winegrapes than Napa and Sonoma combined. It only makes sense to marry the largest appellation with the fastest growing imported wine market in the world. We are honored to have such high-level delegates from Shanghai come visit us. We are looking forward to continuing the dialogue so that not only our world famous Lodi wines can continue to have exponential growth in China, but so that more of our nuts, cherries and olive oils can see their way into the vast and diverse China market.”
The delegation received a warm welcome from Mayor Bob Johnson then heard overviews of the Lodi region’s agricultural export capabilities highlighting wine, cherries, walnuts, almonds and olive oil. After the presentations, some area wineries currently exporting to China enjoyed an informal working lunch with the delegation to discuss growing the export volumes from the Lodi area through Shanghai.