Languedoc unlocking French value offering6th November, 2013 by db_staff
For the first time since the financial crash of 2008, we are starting to see viable medium to long-term growth in the wine sector of the UK on-trade, with the trend for trading up coupled with growing consumer knowledge helping to drive the growth, writes Mark Newton of CGA Strategy.
New World wine countries like Australia and South Africa have always been able to produce decent quality wines at competitive prices, however, it is only relatively recently that undervalued regions of France such as the Languedoc have been able to successfully push their wines to an increasingly eager UK audience.
Meanwhile, the rapid growth of both Pinot Noir and Sauvignon Blanc shows that the twin bastions of Burgundy and Bordeaux are also being enthusiastically received in the on-trade, especially in the middle to upper price range, which is crucial to driving sales in the food led sector.
As a result, France has never had a better opportunity to continue its upward trajectory as increasingly more UK drinkers explore the multitude of wines available from the country with greater confidence. While this currently may be taking place at the higher end of the market, the increasing availability and ever-improving quality of more mainstream French wines, along with a move towards less complicated labelling, will help to promote further growth.
Where bubbles are concerned, there remains only one choice for special occasions – Champagne. France will always be able to rely on this fact and, during times of economic prosperity, consumers will often trade up. Although the financial hardships over the last five years have affected the category, there are signs of a revival.