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Sparkling Wine Pops for the New Year
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Sparkling Wine Pops for the New Year

By Danny Brager, Vice President, Beverage and Alcohol, Nielsen

Consumers around the world will be ringing in the New Year tonight by popping open a bottle of sparkling wine at midnight. The sparkling wine category in the U.S. is quite robust, as sales during the latest 52 weeks are up 4.6 percent. Sparkling wine sales are strongest during the holiday season, as the last eight weeks of the year account for one-third of annual sales. The sparkling wine category is diverse in terms of price point and country of origin, including the Champagne region of France–all of which compete for the consumer dollar and offer consumers a variety of choices.

Price is a Factor

The $10-$25 sparkling wine segment accounts for the greatest percent of sales throughout the year. However, the holidays inspire consumers to splurge and spend a little more, as the $25-$60 sparkling wine segment sees a spike in sales of more than three times during the holidays versus the rest of the year.

While other price segments for sparkling wine also experience strong growth toward the end of the year, the under $10 segment led the way in 2012: sales in this category were up 8 percent over year ago. The $10-$25 segment grew 5.3 percent. Combined, these segments accounted for 77 percent of sparkling wine sales over the 52-week period ending Nov. 10, 2012.

Sparkling Wine Categories Are Ringing Up the Largest Percentage Growth

Prosecco: The Prosecco segment is ringing up strong sales in the sparkling wine category. In fact, this segment grew nearly 40 percent over the latest 52 weeks, and its share of sparkling wine sales is now 8 percent, up 2 percent points from a year ago. Prosecco is also priced slightly higher than most sparkling wine: it has an average price of $11.78 versus an average sparkling wine price of $10.87.

Sparkling Moscato: Sparkling Moscato is another sparkling wine segment that’s gaining sales growth. This segment grew more than 100 percent in the latest 52 weeks and now accounts for nearly 6 percent of sparkling wine sales, double its share a year ago. Sparkling Moscato is priced under $10.

Rosé Sparkling Wines: Rosé sparkling wine sales are also growing, and these wines command much higher prices–over $17 per bottle. This segment accounts for 9 percent of sparkling wine sales, and overall sales grew 3.5 percent over the last 52 weeks.