In 2018, 2.7 billion cases of wine were consumed around the world. Of this, 261 million cases, or close to 10 per cent, were sparkling wine.
There has been a long-term upward trend in sparkling wine sales around the globe. Since 1990, sparkling wine sales have grown by an average of 1.9 per cent a year. Over the same period, still wine sales grew by 0.4 per cent a year. Consequently, the share of sparkling wine in global wine sales has grown from 6 per cent in 1990 to 10 per cent in 2018.
However, after 8 consecutive years in growth, the volume of global sales of sparkling wine dipped in 2018, down 0.3 per cent on 2017. However, the International Wine and Spirit Record (IWSR) forecasts sparkling wine sales will grow by 1.1 per cent a year in the 5 years to 2023. This would equate to an additional 15 million cases of sparkling wine sold in 2023 compared to 2018. So where is the growth coming from?
Figure 1: Global sparkling wine sales
Germany – the world’s biggest sparkling wine market
Germany is currently the world’s biggest sparkling wine market, but sales are forecast to decline over the next 5 years by 0.8 per cent a year (see Figure 2). Italy is forecast to overtake Germany as the world’s biggest sparkling wine market by 2023, with sales up 1.6 per cent a year over the period. The growth in Italy is all domestic sparkling wine such as Prosecco.
Of the top 10 sparkling wine markets, the United States of America (USA) is forecast to be the fastest growing over the next 5 years with a growth rate of 3.5 per cent a year. Other markets forecast to be in growth in this group are Russia, the United Kingdom (UK), Australia, Ukraine and Belgium.
Other smaller markets forecast to grow sales include Japan, Brazil, Sweden, Austria and Canada.
Figure 2: Top ten sparkling wine markets (2018 v 2023)
Australian sparkling wine sales
Globally, Australian sparkling wine sales have been in decline since peaking at 6.2 million cases in 2007. Since then, sales have declined by an average of 3 per cent a year, falling to 4.6 million cases in 2018.
In the domestic off-trade market, IRI MarketEdge report that in 2018–19, the volume of sparkling wine sales increased by 0.8 per cent. Australian sparkling wine sales accounted for 81 per cent of the market and sales grew by 0.6 per cent. In contrast, sales of imported sparkling wine increased by 1.6 per cent. Within the sparkling category, Prosecco is the stand-out sub-segment with sales up 36 per cent over the year. Sparkling rosé is the other sub-segment with solid, growth, up 9 per cent in the period. The average spend per 750ml bottle on Prosecco was $14.74 versus $11.58 for sparkling white and $11.07 for sparkling rosé.
Australian sparkling wine consumers
According to Wine Intelligence, there are 8.8 million drinkers of sparkling wine in Australia, with 5.3 million consuming sparkling wine at least once a month. Consumption is more heavily weighted towards females (55 per cent) compared to males (45 per cent). Consumption of Australian Prosecco is even more heavily weighted to females (58 per cent).
Wine Intelligence also reports that among wine drinkers sparkling wine remains strongly associated with formal events and celebrations, with sparkling wine achieving a much higher rating for these occasions over other alcoholic beverages.
Figure 3: Suitability of different alcoholic beverages by off-premise occasion
Source: Wine Intelligence, Sparkling Wine in the Australian Market 2019