U.S. SPARKLING WINE SALES SPARKLES
As Lily Bollinger so famously said, “I only drink champagne when I’m happy, and when I’m sad. Sometimes I drink it when I’m alone. When I have company, I consider it obligatory. I trifle with it if I am not hungry and drink it when I am. Otherwise I never touch it – unless I’m thirsty.” Americans it seems are getting on the Bolly bubbly bandwagon as US consumption of imported sparkling wine will reach new heights in 2O12 due to the increased presence of Prosecco and Cava, says Wine Intelligence, a wine research consultancy firm. According to The USA Sparkling Wine Report 2O12, over 3O million Americans say they drink sparkling wine at least once a year and about 9 million – mostly females – say they like to it at least once a week. Of the survey’s respondents, 19% said they would be drinking more sparkling wine in 2O12, versus 3% who said they would drink less. Wine Intelligence has also cited data released in December by Symphony IRI that shows 2O11 volumes for sparkling wine in the US grew to about 36 million bottles – an increase of 9.3% on 2O1O. The company attributes the trend to a broadening of the consumer base, a greater range on offer and an increasing desire among some consumers to make sparkling wine a regular treat. Prosecco, said the report, has been growing rapidly in popularity and is drunk at least once every two months by a quarter of the sparkling wine drinking population – a similar figure to that of Champagne. The research also found that Cava is also enjoying a surge in popularity – albeit from a lower base – having benefited from an interest in Spanish cuisine. Even with the boost in consumption, the US doesn’t consume nearly as much sparkling wine as countries such as Germany and the UK. Let’s get busy!