In 2013 Less Wine Bought but Price Boom in Italy

13/03/2014 IRI

In 2013, Italians drank less wine in terms of quantity while at the same time choosing quality wines over savings. They went for D.O.C. bottles and started to appreciate organic wine, but they also opted for less expensive options like table wine and wines from the distributor, in other words, the supermarket brand. There was a steady increase in white wines, and sparkling wines fare better than still. Italian Spumante and Prosecco are increasingly purchased. This is the big picture emerging from research by IRI for Vinitaly 2014 (in Verona from April 6 to 9) on wine sales in supermarkets, a channel which distributes about 63% of wine.

Which wines are the most loved by Italians? The ratings, elaborated by IRI for Vinitaly 2014, shows confirmation of some data with some interesting surprises if looking at the growth rates. The top selling wines are: Chianti, Lambrusco, Vermentino, Barbera, Bonarda, Montepulciano d’Abruzzo, Nero d’Avola, Muller Thurgau, Morellino, and Dolcetto. Among the emerging wines, those with the greatest growth rate, we find the surprising achievement of Pignoletto and Cannonau, the former pushed by an increasing presence on shelves all over Italy and the latter a favorite also thanks to a considerable marketing push. In this specific survey, we also find Prosecco, Vermentino, Pecorino, and Aglianico.

In 2013, the big retailers sold 571 million liters of packaged wine for a value of 1.5 billion euros, with a perceived drop in volume of 6.5% with respect to the previous year (3.6% in 2012), certainly affected by the perceived increase in price: +10.2% per liter, so much so that the sales in numbers showed an increase of 3.1%.

The 75cl bottle of wines with an appellation (DOC, DOCG, and IGT) reigns as the top selling format in 2013, which registered over 213 million liters of sales with a value of almost 1 billion euros. This format saw a decrease of 3.2%, a perceived drop but still less than the -3.5% in 2012, a significant result if taking into consideration the price increase of 5.6% in a year which brought the average price of the bottle to €4.50. The format which had a drastic drop is the tetrapack, whose sales dropped 9.4% in 2013, influenced by an increase in price of 20.5%. The traditional table wine in the 75cl bottle has resisted, and is basically stable with a slight drop of 0.3% making it, in fact, the best performing format in 2013.

With regards to consumer demands for quality, the 4% growth in volume of sales of organic wines in supermarkets is noteworthy with one million liters sold for a value of 5 million euros.

Source: Ansa