Prosecco exports rise in value
The real driving force behind Italian wine exports remains the sparkling wine sector. The latest analysis by the Osservatorio del Vino for the period from January to July 2016 confirms this and supports the forecasts made at the start of the year. According to ISTAT data processed by ISMEA, partner of the Osservatorio, the positive trend of our exports continues, but not at a gallop: the export value for the period has already exceeded 3 billion euros, but the growth rhythm has slowed down (+1.1% with respect to the same period in 2015). “We are neither worried nor enthusiastic, because although the foreign demand for Italian designation wines is good (+8% in value and +4.5% in volume) it is still the sparkling wines that drive sales,” commented Antonio Rallo, president of the Osservatorio del Vino.
Prosecco is the key player
If total exports of sparkling wines are worth 517 million euros (+26%) for 1.3 million hectolitres (+20%), Prosecco leads the sparkling wine market with 456 million euros for 1.2 million hectolitres. It has grown in volume (+24%) but above all in value (+33%), which should not be underestimated. “The next few months will be decisive for defining the precise value of our exports. At the moment, with a forecast from the data available, we estimate that we could close 2016 with 5.5 billion euros,” continues Rallo. The first market is the United States, where Italian wine has slightly increased in value (+1%) to reach a quota of 771 million euros, and the demand for sparkling wines has grown by 14% in volume, to the detriment of still reds.
Not just bubblies. The case of China and Russia
In the United Kingdom our wine exports are worth over 400 million euros (+2.2%), but there are also good performances in Austria (54.6 million euros, +5% in value) and the Netherlands (76 million euros, +6.2%). Excellent news from the Far East: in China, Italian wine has grown by 10% in value and by 9% in volume, reaching 54 million euros for 170 thousand hectolitres. However, here the merit is due to still wines, especially DOC and DOCG whites (+27% in volume and +20% in value). There is also a positive sign from Russia, where our exports have started growing again, both in value (+11% for 35.4 million euros) and volume (+19% for 160 thousand hectolitres), also here thanks to DOC and DOCG wines.