February is a month of indulgence in the U.S., as Americans get their fill of candy and sparkling wine to celebrate Valentine’s Day. Nielsen expects consumers to purchase more than $707 million (more than 127 million pounds) in candy and more than $23 million of sparkling wine this week (two million bottles) during the week of Valentine’s Day.
It must be love, as consumers binge throughout the month on higher-priced items for their loved ones. Even though the overall average price point for sparkling wines crosses $11, this is the best-selling time of the year for sweet-tasting sparkling moscato. The average price point for rose sparkling wine jumps as well, rising eight percent during Valentine’s Day season. Not all categories of sparkling wines sell better this time of year, however, as sales of Italian and Spanish varieties typically decline this week.
“Valentine’s Day is not the time to take chances with the unknown,” says Danny Brager, vice president, beverage alcohol, Nielsen. “Americans stick to tried and true types of sparkling wine, staying away from Prosecco and Cava (Italian and Spanish), which actually post their lowest sales of any week during Valentine’s Day week.”
U.S. lovebirds are big procrastinators, however, as February 13 is the top total candy and chocolate shopping day in February. U.S. consumers are also big bargain shoppers, as February 15 is the second-most important chocolate candy purchasing day in February.