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Australian Wines Show Value Growth In U.S., As Consumers Explore Higher Price Points

July 22, 2019

After weathering challenging conditions in the U.S. in recent years, Australian wine exports to the U.S. grew by 2% to A$432 million ($305m) in the 12 months through June, with growth concentrated among premium and luxury brands. According to Aaron Ridgway, regional general manager for the Americas at Wine Australia, Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, and Grenache priced above $10 performed particularly well.

“We know that dramatic change in the U.S. wine market is pretty difficult to achieve,” says Ridgway. “But consistent, steady change, with volume declining slightly and value increasing slightly, is absolutely consistent with the Wine Australia strategy. Australia’s over-representation at lower price points is starting to correct, and the more favorable price points are starting to increase.” In the year-to-date through June 16, Australian wines were roughly flat from a volume perspective in IRI channels, but posted 1.3% growth on the value end. Treasury Wine Estates’ 19 Crimes brand has been boosting Australia’s U.S. growth lately, increasing 47% to 1.6 million cases last year, according to Impact Databank.

To further bolster the category in the U.S., Wine Australia is launching a new $5 million campaign, “Far from Ordinary,” that will include events and retailer-hosted tastings, aimed at keeping its offerings top of mind with both consumers and the trade. Retailers planning to feature Australian wine include Florida’s ABC Wines and Spirits, Illinois’ Binny’s Beverage Depot, and national retailers like Total Wine and Wine.com.

Globally, Australia’s wine exports rose 4% to A$2.86 billion ($2b). China, the category’s top market, saw value rise 7% to A$1.2 billion ($850m).—Shane English

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