The economy has impacts in many areas and drinking wines isn’t exempt from a slowdown. However, current indications are that drinker preferences have changed, not necessarily slowed. Several years ago premium, top dollar wines were leading the fast sales growth charts. Today the top sellers are a range from easy drinking fun wines to a smaller percentage of premium higher dollar wines.
While consumer spending has slowed in many areas, wineries have not slowed their launch of new wines and consolidation and growth in products. US wine consumption, based upon latest, the preliminary government figures show that wine growth in case quantities grew slightly in recent time. Additional USDA reporting is expected in two weeks. Wine dollar sales did not fair as well, actually showing a decrease in sales dollars. The combination of sales and value show that lower priced wines were the reason for the continued increase in wine volume.
Leading Suppliers and Brands
E &J Gallo Winery is leading a charge in growth wines with multiple brands and new entries, this long-time California based company knows the market. Their brands such as Barefoot Cellars, Liberty Creek, Five Oaks and the newer Don Miguel Gascon all posted growth of 50% or more lately.
DFV isn’t a household name but their Gnarly Head wines have enjoyed a 90% increase in this brand since 2005. The name and price might entice tasters, but taste keep sales ringing at the register. Other brands to try are their Twisted and Bota Box wines, which are showing growth in sales and respect.
The Trinchero Family Estates supplier has been hitting the shelves with their growth wine, Menage a Trois. The name is fun and full of imagery, the bottle is full of a respectable taste. The price as with the other mass distributed wines are reasonable.
Wines to Watch
The Wine Group (TWG) is the third largest wine group in the US, behind E & J Gallo and Constellation Wines. Well known wine brands such as Corbett Canyon, Franzia boxed wines, and Glen Ellen are from TWG and have been steady sellers. The brand to watch though is their Fish Eye wine that has grown almost 50% in the last four years.