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UK Champagne consumption drops but sales continue to climb

Champagne exports continued to soar in 2006 despite a drop in the UK market.

Exports went up by 10%, with France increasing its consumption by nearly 3%, according to initial year-on-year figures released by the Champagne trade body (CIVC),

Outside France, the UK remains the top destination for Champagne with Britons drinking one third of all bottles produced. Over 30m bottles went to the UK in 2006 – a drop of 8% on the previous year.

Following the UK, the US and Germany, the second and third largest consumers of Champagne, imported 21m and 10m bottles– increases of 9% and 6% respectively.

The CIVC did say, however, that ‘due to data problems with certain importers’, figures concerning European countries would need to be re-adjusted. It was not made clear whether this would reduce or inflate the statistics.

Some countries, however, posted massive growth with exports to China doubling and Japan posting a 37% increase. Australia and Spain saw Champagne imports rise by 28% and 23% respectively.

The results compare sales from January to November, discounting the traditionally busy – and profitable – Christmas period.

Written by Oliver Styles

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