02/24/2015 11:08 EST | Updated 04/26/2015 05:59 EDT

Canada Berries winery benefiting from growing Chinese wine market

A Richmond, B.C. winery is taking advantage of China's growing wine market to increase sales.

Tommy Yuan, the director of Canada Berries and the president of the Canada Asia Business Network, says business has exceeded expectations since he bought the company a year ago. He says Canada Berries shipped almost50,000 bottles of wine to China in its first year.

China is fast becoming one of the biggest global markets for wine. Last year, The Wall Street Journal reported that China has overtaken France and Italy as the world's largest consumer of red wine.

Canada Berries' advantage over other wineries is that it specializes in fruit wines — in particular, blueberry wines made from Lower Mainland berries. Blueberries sell at a high price in China.

"Even now the market in China for blueberries is extremely expensive," said Yuan. "So when we sell blueberry wine at a reasonable cost. they're just amazed."

Yuan says he's trying to get the company into the local market and Canada Berries hosted Chinese New Year events throughout the weekend in a bid to boost its profile.

The winery hosted its first Miaohui or "temple fair" with entertainment for kids and adults, including fireworks, face painting, cultural dancing and more.

To listen to the full interview, click on the audio labelled: Local winery taking advantage of growing Chinese wine market