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Using an original dataset and theoretical framework, this paper offers a reinterpretation of the French wine international trade after external shocks during wine globalisation based on trade policy. To maintain its external position, particularly after the arrival of phylloxera in the 1860s, French authorities promoted the development of Algerian vineyards by complex discrimination in tariffs. We highlight a negative relationship between discrimination in tariff policy and market share for wine trade partners to the detriment of Spain, Italy, and Portugal and in favour of Algeria. By combining a counterfactual analysis and two theoretical models, we consider Algeria as a new competitor in an imperfect competition. Moreover, using data of wine quality at a disaggregated level, we reveal that the control of imports by France allowed the diversification of the range of exports and maximisation of profits.