New Zealand leads growth for wine in 2016 says WSTA report

New Zealand and Argentina topped the growth charts for wine sales in the UK during 2016, new figures from the Wine & Spirit Trade Association show.

The popularity of New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc led to the sale of 63 million bottles of the country’s wine in the year to November, a 15% rise on the previous year.

Eight out of every nine of these were sold in the off-trade, said the WSTA in its end of year Market Report.

New Zealand’s growth comes at a time when the majority of the top 10 countries selling wine in the UK are showing a decline in volume sales.

Argentina and Chile are both bucking the trend, with the former’s Malbec wines spurring volume growth of 32% and a value increase of 31% in the off-trade.

WSTA chief executive Miles Beale said: “It is great to see wines from New Zealand and Argentina doing so well in the UK.

“It is not well understood that the UK is the global hub of the international wine trade, a position we need to ensure we maintain.

“The fall in the value of Sterling is having a serious and immediate impact on importers who have shouldered the burden of the fall of the pound until now, but this is not sustainable.

“Any increase in duty, on top of the post-Brexit Sterling devaluation, would have dire consequences on Britain’s wine trade.”