UK sales of Champagne and sparkling wine hit a record high of almost £2.2bn in 2018, thanks in part to surging demand for the French crémant style.
UK sparkling wine sales hit record high in 2018
According to the latest market report from the Wine and Spirit Trade Association (WSTA), nearly 165m bottles of Champagne and sparkling wine were sold in the UK in the last 12 months, with non-Champagne sparkling wine sales reaching a new high of 146m bottles, worth £1.5bn.
Overall, spending has almost doubled since 2013, when combined sales stood at £1.2bn, although growth has slowed somewhat over the past couple of years.
The WSTA said the ‘lion’s share’ of the market was taken by Prosecco, but added that the Italian sparkling wine’s sales had slowed markedly in recent times, as consumers explored other sparkling wine styles, including English sparkling and crémant.
‘We’ve seen continued growth [for crémant] over many years and definitely expect that trend to continue,’ said Becky Hull MW, wine buyer at Waitrose.
‘Crémant offers brilliant value for money, so it’s enjoying well-deserved success.’
A spokesperson for retailer Marks & Spencer said its sales of crémant had soared by 300% over the past year, but added that ‘Prosecco isn’t going anywhere’, with sales up 47%.
WSTA chief executive Miles Beale said 2018 had been ‘another sparkling success’ for wine producers, and added: ‘UK consumers now have a far greater range to choose from than ever before, including world-class English sparkling wines, cavas, Prosecco and crémants.
‘But, to allow consumers to continue to enjoy a wide range of quality sparkling wines, the government cannot allow a “no deal” Brexit, which will stifle trade and limit choice.’