How is wine performing during the weak economic climate? Are consumers still trading up? According to Nielsen’s food, drug and liquor scan data, wine and even high-end wine is still growing but at a much slower rate. To get an idea of the difference, we took a look at Nielsen data in the period to April 5, 2008 and April 7, 2007.
OVERALL TABLE WINE. Table wine continued to post growth in the four weeks to April 5 but at a slower rate than the 52 week period to April 5. Table wine dollar sales grew 4.7% in the four weeks, but were up 5.4% for the year.
In terms of volume, the four week period saw growth of 1.5% while volume jumped 2.2% in the 52 weeks. It takes longer for trends to show up in 52-week data, while four-week numbers tend to reflect current trends. Case in point? Growth of wine in the U.S. is stalling and isn’t showing signs of turning around (yet).
Let’s take a look at the same period last year. In the four weeks to April 7, 2007, dollar sales jumped 11.1%. In the 52 weeks to April 7, 2007, dollar sales grew 6.9%. Volume increased a whopping 7% for the month and 2.9% for the year to April 2007. Volume growth of table wine in 2007 was almost five times more than in 2008.
TRADING UP. High-end wines reached a new record of growth in 2007. Since then, the rate of growth has slowed. It turns out that consumers are still trading up, just not as much as they were last year.
Higher-priced wines continued to post growth in April 2008, but at a much slower rate than in April 2007. In the four weeks to April 2008, dollar sales and volume of wines priced $15 and above rose 8.1%. Wines priced $12-14.99 saw sales climb 7.8% and volume rise 5.5%. Meanwhile, wines in the $9-11.99 range increased 7.5% in dollar sales and 5.3% in volume.
Dollar sales of wines prices $6-8.99 grew 1.9%, followed by $3-5.99 (3.7%) and $0-2.99 (1.2%). Volume of wines prices $6-8.99 grew 0.6%, followed by $3-5.99 (1.5%) and $0-2.99 (-0.6%).
The difference between 2008 and 2007 is vast. In the four weeks to April 2007, the $15 and up category grew 26.9% in value and 26.3% in volume. Dollar sales of wines prices $12-14.99 grew 20.3%, while volume jumped 20.1%. Wines in the $9-11.99 range rose 15.1% in value and 14.4% in volume.
All of the lower priced wines grew faster in 2007 as well, aside from the $0-2.99 price segment. Dollar sales of the $6-8.99 category rose 8%, followed by $3-5.99 (7.8%) and $0-2.99 (0.3%). Volume of wines priced $6-8.99 grew 9.2%, followed by $3-5.99 (7.3%) and $0-2.99 (0.2%).