Although global consumption of sparkling wine took a slight hit in 2018, the category is expected to regain its momentum, and is forecast to grow by 1.2% compound annual growth rate 2018-2023.
Germany has historically been the largest consumer of sparkling wine in terms of volume. Italy, however, is expected to overtake Germany and topple it to second position. “Sparkling wine growth in Italy is expected to be driven by interest among younger consumers; millennials already drink more wine than their parents,” notes Dan Mettyear, IWSR’s Head of Wine. “This will be complemented by the growing popularity of Prosecco and niche alternatives such as Franciacorta, which, having consolidated their position at the important aperitivo occasion, now challenge still wine and beer at mealtimes,” remarks Mettyear.
While Germany and Italy battle it out for consumption volumes, the US is the world’s most valuable sparkling wine market. The country’s sparkling wine category is expected to continue to grow by 3.5% compound annual growth rate 2018-2023 as a result of US consumers showing preference towards Champagne, Prosecco, and Cava styles at increasing rates.
US expansion towards 2023 is expected to be underpinned by increasing everyday consumption by a consumer that has found a way into the category through Prosecco. Moving on the back of this trend, the availability of a wider range of sparkling products, price points and styles will feed into growing consumer curiosity around sparkling wine.
“Sparkling wine has enjoyed year-over-year growth in the US thanks in part to increased excitement for spritz cocktails, and also to more affordable sparkling options like Prosecco,” says Brandy Rand, COO of the Americas at IWSR Drinks Market Analysis. “Though sparkling wine marketers have done a very good job reinforcing that these products aren’t only for celebratory or special occasions, Valentine’s Day is when consumers like to splurge on higher-priced sparkling options like Champagne.”
At the top end of the sparkling wine category, Japan and Australia are the markets to watch for Champagne’s future. Premiumisation underlines the trend in both markets, but in Australia it’s more about a broadening of its consumption occasion, while in Japan, food pairing is the principal driver.
For the Japanese market, Champagne faces no direct competition and benefits from a clear category definition and quality guarantee, which has allowed it to maintain growth. Other sparkling wines, however, are coming under assault from far cheaper RTDs, which appeal to consumers in a less high-end setting.
Similar to the US market, in Australia, Prosecco is profiting from its strong appeal to younger people and women; the Aperol Sprtiz is also driving the category’s popularity. “The sparkling wine occasion has widened from celebration to afternoon social gatherings, with many people choosing to have sparkling wine instead of still wine. As with still wine, people are trading up from value and standard local wines to those positioned in the premium-and-above price range. Champagne has particularly benefited from the trading up,” remarks Tommy Keeling, IWSR’s research director for Asia-Pacific.
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