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German winemaking flourishes in the East | Updated: 2014-04-03 11:20

The vineyard is now capable of producing 600,000 liters of wine and 200,000 liters of grape juice a year.

Yu said in addition to its own yield, the vineyard also purchases grapes from other farmers' vineyards at protective prices, often 3-5 percent higher than market costs.

The State Administration of Foreign Experts initially invited Gorres, after Zaozhuang city government said it needed a foreign expert to get its winemaking industry off the ground.

With the help of Gorres and Beu, 16 varieties of European grape saplings now grow on Chinese soil.

Marc Linden, grandson of Gorres, said he and his wife Michaela Wolff first visited the vineyard in August 2010.

Linden inherited the family business after his grandfather died. In 2010, he accepted the "Golden Friendship Award", the most honorable award given by the Chinese government to foreigners, in name of his grandfather.

In the wine manor, a two meter-high bronze statue of Gorres with a glass of wine stands by the side of the grape plantation.

"Many rural families now have better living conditions through developing viniculture based on my grandfather's work. I am obliged to keep things as they are," Linden told Xinhua via email.

Linden said he would share his vision and experience in planning, company organization, marketing, product design, purchasing and sales in future.

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