Champagne sales hit by pandemic
January 27, 2021 - French exports of champagne fell by 17.6 per cent in 2020 as the pandemic forced drinking venues to close and put celebratory events on ice, according to producers’ group CIVC.
Total sales of champagne fell to 245 million bottles in 2020 from almost 298 million in 2019. In value terms, provisional estimates put 2020 sales at some €4 billion, down by €1bn, CIVC said.
The largest falls were in crucial export markets Britain and the United States, which each saw a 20 per cent drop in champagne volume sales in 2020. Japan, another primary market, registered a steeper 28 per cent decline, CIVC said.
Market falls also occurred in Germany (down 15 per cent), Switzerland (down nine per cent) and Belgium (down five per cent). Only Australia bucked the trend with volumes exported there rising 14 per cent.
According to the Wine and Spirit Trade Association, champagne sales in British shops and supermarkets in the run-up to New Year reached a healthy 2.3 million bottles worth some £63m (€71.3m).
Exports in 2018 showed that more champagne was consumed in foreign markets than France for the first time in over 50 years. France became the largest market in the 1960s but has seen a steady decline since a peak in 2007.
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