English Sparkling Wine set for mainstream, according to new report

Tuesday, 20 December, 2011
Wine Intelligence
Over half of the UK sparkling wine drinking population say they have tried English sparkling wine, thanks to a better supply and a growing reputation for quality, according to new research published last week.
Sparkling wine from England, made using the “traditional method”, or the same way as Champagne, has been increasing sales dramatically over the past 5 years as investment has poured into vineyards in the south of England.

During the same period sparkling wine sales in general have climbed rapidly in the UK, from around 6 million 9L cases in 2006 to 10 million cases in 2010, defying both the economic downturn and slowing growth in the still wine category.

According to the Wine Intelligence UK Sparkling Report, around 15 million out of the 25 million people in the UK who drink sparkling wine at least once a year say they have tried English sparkling wine at least once, with Christmas and the associated party season the most popular occasion.

English sparkling is proving particularly popular among “committed” sparkling wine drinkers – those who say they drink sparkling wine at least once a month. New World sparkling wine is the fizz this group are most likely to drink frequently, followed closely by Cava, and then by English sparkling, which puts it ahead of Champagne amongst these more regular sparkling wine drinkers.

The data is derived from Wine Intelligence’s own tracking research of UK sparkling wine drinkers, the most recent wave of which was a survey of 511 UK adults who drink sparkling wine, conducted in November 2011, using quota sampling to be representative of all UK sparkling wine drinkers.

Richard Halstead, COO of Wine Intelligence, said: “The UK sparkling wine market has been one of the few bright spots in a relatively gloomy year for the wine trade. Within this market, the English sparkling wine growth has been phenomenal, and the product appears to be familiar to a much wider group than we had previously thought.”

The UK Sparkling Wine Report is published by Wine Intelligence, and available from the Wine Intelligence Reports Shop, priced at £1 500 or three Report Credits.