I have good news and bad news for my Aussie champs fans. The good news is we punch well above our weight in champagne consumption. Our tiny population manages to rank 7th globally in the champagne consumption stakes.
BUT… the bad news is – for the first time in six years! – Champagne exports to Australia have dropped according to the annual champagne export report card.
The timing in launching bubble & flute couldn’t be better… we need to save our champagne status and boost our consumption and I’m here to help.
About the champagne export report card
The annual champagne shipments report was released this week by The Comité Champagne. The report looks at global trends and breaks them down by export market. The report card overall was pretty good but some countries got an A+ to our B- …
- Globally champagne exports were down slightly overall.
- But a number of countries still managed growth… namely the US, Canada, Mexico, European countries (especially Germany, the Netherlands, Spain and Italy), the Scandinavian countries, South Africa, Asia and… New Zealand is up 25.4%!!!! (come on Aussies, we got smashed by the Kiwis!!!)
- The UK is the second-biggest export market for champagne (after the US) and Brexit has wreaked havoc with the drop in the pound affecting sales.
- Rosé exports are up 8.6% and cuvée de prestige champagne is on the up with 4.6% growth.
Australian champagne fans punch well above their weight.
So here’s what I take away from Australia’s champagne report card
We don’t totally suck, but we definitely didn’t do our best work last year.
- They say… After six consecutive years of growth, Champagne’s exports to Australia “stagnated” in 2016.
- I say… If learning that the Kiwis pulled out a 25% growth rate doesn’t motivate us to get our champs buying back on this year, I don’t know what will.
- They say… The major houses dominate the Australian Champagne market at 96.4% of exports but there is a glimmer of interest for the Champagne produced by growers. We actually had more growers champagne to choose from in 2016 with 29 new growers exporting to our shores whereas three of the big houses dropped off from sending their champs our way!
- I say… This tells me I need to write more about growers’ champagnes and the difference between the big houses and growers’ champagnes. In short, the growers are a bit like David battling Goliath (but very nice and yummy versions of Goliath… I am not bagging the houses!) I know we Aussies love fighting for the little guys so I am committed to putting my taste buds on the line and ramping up some support for grower champagne.
- They say… Rosé champagne stands out among the segments with a third consecutive year of growth, up 3.4% in value.
- I say… I think at least 1% of that growth for rosé is down to my personal consumption… haha. I will continue to do my bit.
Aussies really only get to try a small amount of the full champagne menu
The biggest take-home for me is that there is SO much Champagne that we never get to try here!!!
There are in total 382 champagne houses, 4,363 growers and 42 cooperatives and we get 100 houses, 112 growers and 14 cooperatives exported to Australia. In contrast, the US and the UK get more variety (see below)
US – Maisons 177 (+5) Vignerons 283 (-16) Coopératives 23 (=)
UK – Maisons 155 (+6) Vignerons 200 (-16) Coopératives 22 (+1)
It seems the only way that is going to change is by creating demand. So let’s get about creating some demand… try, try, try and buy, buy, buy.
Don’t mind if I do!
If you’re helping build demand, make sure you post a pic and tag @bubbleandflute #aussieslovechampagne #sendmorechampagnedownunder
Bubble & Flute promotes the responsible consumption of alcohol for individuals of legal drinking age in their country.