You are currently viewing the International Edition. You can also switch to the Hong Kong Edition.
Wednesday 1 July 2015

Champagne shipments fall by 14m bottles

15th February, 2013 by Patrick Schmitt

Figures just released for Champagne shipments to the end of 2012 show a global decline of almost 14.2 million bottles, representing a 4.4% drop.

ChampagneWhile the region shipped almost 323m bottles in 2011, the sum last year was just short of 309m at 308,760,388 bottles.

In percentage terms, growers suffered the greatest decline, falling 5.3% in volume, compared to a 4.2% drop for the houses and a 3.5% decline for the cooperatives during the course of last year.

Speaking to the drinks business yesterday, Andrew Hawes, managing director at Bollinger’s UK importer Mentzendorff, confirmed that current trading conditions had hit growers the hardest.

“Growers have been the most affected category, because during the Champagne boom they increasingly commercialized their own wine, but in the flight to reassurance they have really suffered… the Champagne market is driven by brands,” he said.

Looking at the volume figures in more detail – although exports by individual country have yet to be released – the European Union has seen the greatest drop, falling 7.1% over the last 12 months, from 82.3m bottles in 2011 to 76.4m in 2012.

Domestic market France has also endured declines, with over 10m fewer bottles ordered by French retailers and restaurants in the last year, representing a 5.6% decrease to 171.4m bottles.

On the other hand, the total shipments to countries outside the EU has risen 3.2% to almost 61m bottles, accounting for a record of nearly 20% of the global market.

Le Comité Interprofessionnel du vin de Champagne (CIVC) noted that Japan and Australia in particularly had enjoyed strong growth, as well as emerging Champagne markets China, Russia, Mexico and Nigeria.

In essence, the figures reflect the economic troubles of a recessionary Europe, and the better performance of emerging and mineral-rich countries.

However, such is the scale of Champagne’s largest markets, France and the UK, that declines in these countries affect the region’s overall performance.

In particular, France, which accounts for almost 56% of the total market for Champagne, has seen falling sales during 2012, particularly December, when shipments fell 8.8% compared to December 2011.

Such a performance is in contrast to the recession of 2008 and 2009, when France sustained its Champagne consumption, absorbing some of the stock from declining export markets.

Meanwhile, in the UK, consumers bought 7% less Champagne in the off-trade during 2012 according to Nielsen, with a marked decline in sales, like France, during the last month of the year.

Hawes at Mentzendorff blamed the UK volume decline on a reduction in the amount and depth of discounting on Champagne in retailers during the key, pre-Christmas sales period.

“It is clear that there was less discounting activity,” he said.

According to Hawes, this was because the UK’s major multiple retailers lacked the access to the same high levels of inexpensive Champagne stock compared to previous years.

He also suggested that a reduction in high-low promotions on alcohol were connected to increased Government pressure on supermarkets to retail drinks more responsibly, as well as new guidelines on promotional mechanics from The Office of Fair Trading (OFT), including a new set of principles agreed to by the majority of Britain’s major multiples in November last year.

Looking ahead, Hawes said he believed that a reduction in the amount of high-low price discounting to sell large quantities of Champagne was here to stay.

“I believe it will continue and intensify,” he said. “It is part of a broader trend for the UK to shift back towards a value-driven rather than volume-driven market, both because of increasing constraints on supply and increasing pressures on retailers to find other ways to sell.”

Although the full figures for shipments by value have yet to be released, the CIVC said that turnover in 2012 was €4.37 billion, which the organisation described as “stable”, and reflecting an increase in the average price of Champagne.

The headline volume figures for 2011 and 2012 can be viewed below:

Champagne shipments – Total (bottles)

2011: 322,951,807
2012: 308,760,388
Difference: -14,191,419
Difference (%): -4.4%

Champagne shipments – France (bottles)

2011: 181,623,158
2012: 171,379,813
Difference: -10,243,345
Difference (%): -5.6%

Champagne shipments – European Union (bottles)

2011: 82,295,173
2012: 76,428,895
Difference: -5,866,278
Difference (%): -7.1%

Champagne shipments – All other exports markets (bottles)

2011: 59,033,476
2012: 60,951,680
Difference: +1,918,204
Difference (%): +3.2%




Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

If that's interesting, how about these?

China’s Ningxia region launches wine contest

Select winemakers will have the chance to travel to China to learn from its more...

Tesco sales take a tumble despite price cuts

Tesco's like-for-like sales fell by 1.3% in the three months to 30 May, an more...

Flavoured styles lead drinks NPD

A new report from Nielsen shows that flavoured variants are dominating more...

PR Senior Account Manager/Director

London, United Kingdom

Depending on experience

Top 10 wines in the UK press

An English fizz fit for Wimbledon, a "chunky, berry-stuffed" Negroamaro and a more...

WW1 Scotch to be auctioned

A bottle of Scotch whisky purportedly belonging to a soldier in the First World more...

Vinadeis unveils Languedoc 'black diamonds'

One of France’s largest wine producers has launched a high-end Languedoc more...

UK Sales Manager

London, United Kingdom

Wimbledon serves up English wine

Organisers of this year’s Wimbledon have decided to offer tennis fans English more...

Depp puts French estate on sale for £16.5m

Hollywood actor Johnny Depp has put his estate in the south of France, which more...

Cristal launches 'underrated' vintage

Champagne Louis Roederer has released its Cristal prestige cuvée from the more...

Wine Buyer

London, United Kingdom

Based on experience

Asda warns suppliers of Champagne scam

Asda is warning suppliers to be on guard after several companies received more...

UK market in growth as price increases slow

The latest figures from the Wine and Spirit Trade Association show that more...

Castel feeds aperitif thirst

Europe’s largest wine producer, Castel, has unveiled a raft of new products more...

The Tour de l'Oc in pictures

A pictorial report of the highs and lows of the Tour de l'Oc cycling challenge more...

Chinese student builds house out of beer bottles

An engineering graduate and his father have built a two-storey house made out more...

Bilingual 'tool' demystifies wine tasting

The Australian Grape and Wine Authority has developed a new "tool" which more...

Marketing and eCommerce Manager

London, United Kingdom

Competitive, includes equity options

UK craves Spanish wining and dining

British foodies are passing over Bordeaux and Burgundy in favour of Spanish more...

Beaujolais pushes for sparkling AOC

Beaujolais is trying to gain AOC status for its sparkling wines which, with it more...

UK importer confident of Champagne comeback

One leading UK Champagne importer is optimistic for the future of the category more...

PR Manager


Hardys invests £4m in summer of cricket

Hardys has unveiled a new £4 million consumer marketing campaign to tie in more...

Burgundian négociant celebrates gin smuggler

Burgundian négociant, Vallet Frères, has allowed a special bottling of more...