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‘Feel-good factor’ getting corks popping in UK

The strength of the UK economy is generating a “feel-good factor” that is spurring on sparkling wine sales, according to recent Wine Intelligence research.

It’s party time again in the UK

As we edge ever further from the frosty days of the recession, it seems to be party time again in the UK with sparkling wine consumption on the rise and increased spending in both the on- and off-trade.

“There is a certain ‘feel-good factor’ present in the UK economy at the moment, which is having a beneficial effect on the UK wine-drinking market.

“While there has been no increase in the number of wine drinkers in the UK, those who do drink are spending more and spending on better quality products,” said Luis Osório, a senior research analyst for Wine Intelligence.

“We’re also starting to see a generational shift, with the opportunities available in the millennial segment becoming clearer. Over the coming years, these adventurous drinkers will become the driving force behind wine consumption trends,” he added.

Millennials aged between 18 and 35 now make up just over a quarter of regular UK wine drinkers. Less influenced by grape variety and origin than the previous generation, they shop for wine online and are experimental in their choices.

A quarter of wine drinkers now spend over £10 on wine as a gift, up from 16% in 2013, while 14% of those surveyed drink wine with a restaurant meal at least once a week.

The Prosecco boom also shows no sign of slowing; with four million more UK consumers drinking Prosecco today compared to two years ago. Sales volumes tell a similar tale, with 5.4 million cases of Italian sparkling wine sold in 2014, almost two million cases more than in 2013.

A full analysis of the sparkling wine market in the UK will appear in the November issue of The Drinks Business, out this week.

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