Businesses Target Growing Spanish-Language Population

By Susan Jones | July 7, 2008 | 8:21 PM EDT

( - A California wine producer says it is putting bilingual labels on some of its wine bottles to better serve America's growing Spanish-speaking population. And a major national newspaper has just purchased a local Spanish-language paper to better connect with that market.

Beringer vineyards of Napa Valley says the addition of Spanish on its White Zinfandel bottles underscores its "commitment to the growing Latino market in the United States."

"It's about time we in the wine industry recognize the importance of the U.S. Latino consumer," said Dan Leese, the managing director of the Beringer Blass Wine Estates.

"By offering a multiple language label on our popular White Zinfandel, we are responding to a real consumer need," Leese said in a press release.

The U.S. Census Bureau says Latinos make up the largest and fastest-growing minority group in the nation - 39 million people, or 13 percent of the U.S. population. According to Beringer, 40 percent of Latinos in the U.S. drink wine at least once a week.

Starting in late May, the winery plans to put bilingual labels on White Zinfandel bottles sold in California, Arizona and Texas. Beringer said it is "responding to a real consumer need."

Washington Post buys Spanish-language paper

Many other businesses are eyeing the growing immigrant population with interest.

The Washington Post Co. announced on Monday that it is buying a local Spanish-language newsweekly -- El Tiempo Latino.

The newspaper describes the purchase its "most significant effort to date to connect with the rapidly growing Washington area Hispanic population, which now numbers roughly 447,000, according to 2000 census figures."

The newsweekly's business and editorial operations will remain independent, the newspaper said, although the Washington Post and El Tiempo Latino may collaborate on news gathering and advertising sales.

"El Tiempo Latino is an outstanding community newspaper, and it will play a vital role in The Post's ongoing efforts to reach the growing local Spanish-speaking community," Post publisher Boisfeuillet Jones Jr. said in a news release.

"The transaction will help both El Tiempo Latino and The Post better meet the needs of Spanish-language readers and the advertisers who seek to reach them."

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