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Impact Databank: Sparkling Wines Defy Gravity Amid 2020’s Challenges

October 28, 2020

The total U.S. wine market is poised to register its 27th consecutive annual volume gain to yet another record high in 2020, but faced with fierce competition from hard seltzer, spirits, and other drinks sectors, as well as a still uncertain on-premise environment, the industry is expected to inch ahead just 0.2% this year, according to The U.S. Wine Market: Shanken’s Impact Databank Review & Forecast, 2020 Edition. Looking ahead, the impact of the pandemic and resulting economic downturn is projected to cause overall wine consumption to decline in value terms by year-end, and shed volume beginning in 2021, except for one segment: sparkling wine.

This year will mark the 12th consecutive annual increase for sparkling wines, which suffered a temporary setback during the global financial crisis of 2008. The current pandemic and recession notwithstanding, the sparkling segment still appears to have considerable upside as it has evolved from an occasion-driven category into much broader usage. Sparkling wine’s overall market share in 2020 is projected to be two full share points higher than just 10 years prior, according to the 252-page report.

The sparkling category is expected to continue posting modest but consistent gains until at least 2025, while all other wines are projected to shed over 2 million cases combined during the next five years.

Imports have been fueling sparkling wine’s growth for the better part of the past decade, driven by solid advances from Prosecco and Champagne. Last year, imported sparkling depletions rose 4.5% to nearly double their volume of just 10 years prior. In fact, import volumes overtook domestic sparkling wine last year for the first time ever, according to Impact Databank. Prosecco volumes in the U.S. have doubled the past five years, led by the La Marca (E.&J. Gallo) and Mionetto (Freixenet-Mionetto USA) brands. La Marca is expected to reach the 2-million-case mark by year-end, and become the largest-selling sparkling wine brand overall in the U.S. by volume, surpassing domestic labels Cook’s and Andre.

Meanwhile, Champagne brands Veuve Clicquot and Moët & Chandon (both Moët Hennessy USA) continue to lead all sparkling wines—import and domestic—in terms of retail value. Those two luxury-priced brands account for over 60% of the Champagne market in the U.S., according to Impact Databank. Among brands priced above $25 a 750-ml, Veuve Clicquot is the top overall wine brand in retail dollar terms. On the domestic end, the two largest-selling méthode champenoise brands—Korbel and Domaine Chandon—both increased share last year.

For more information and to purchase The U.S. Wine Market: Impact Databank Review & Forecast, 2020 Edition, as well as other exclusive Shanken reports and publications, click here.—Natalia Razzo

Top Five Sparkling Wine Brands In The U.S. By Volume
(millions of 9-liter case depletions)
Rank Brand Company Origin 2015 2020E Growth
1 La Marca E.&J. Gallo Winery Italy 0.9 2.0 17.1%
2 Cook’s Constellation Brands California 1.8 1.9 0.1%
3 Andre E.&J. Gallo Winery California 1.7 1.9 1.5%
4 Korbel Brown-Forman California 1.4 1.5 0.3%
5 Barefoot Bubbly E.&J. Gallo Winery California 1.2 1.2 0.2%
Total Top Five2 7.0 8.3 3.3%
Total Sparkling Wine 19.0 22.1 3.2%
1 Average annual compound growth rate.
2 Addition of columns may not agree due to rounding.Source: IMPACT DATABANK © 2020
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