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May 30, 2022 View:

Direct wine prices fall as wine retail sales continue to rise

According to Nielsen data, the average bottle price for direct distilleries continues to decline as overall sales volume in the channel increases, while the retail channel is seeing the opposite trend.

Photo courtesy of: Wine Click

According to the latest retail and DtC data from Nielsen and Wines Vines Analytics/Sovos ShipCompliant, November DtC shipments were up 17% year-over-year to more than 977,0009l cases, while the value of off-market sales increased 11% to nearly $1.8 billion.

For the 12 months ending November 2020, Nielsen tracked $20 billion and 209 million cases, respectively, in the retail channel, while DtC decreased $3.65 billion from 8.2 million cases.

While both channels were up from the previous year, the growth rate was the lowest since the 2019 New Crown outbreak first roiled the market in March. It is also the first time since March that retail price increases have outpaced DtC shipping price increases.

The data also shows that this year"s holiday season did not have the traditional increase in sales, as most consumers celebrated the holidays while noting that the epidemic was spreading.

Other findings.

DtC shipments hit a record high in November.

Price tier growth increased dramatically, from less than $30 per bottle to more than $30, with volume growth doubling the value growth. The result is that the average price per 750 ml bottle is down nearly $4 from a year ago to just under $44.

Large wineries (producing over 500,000 cases per year) continue to drive significant growth in DtC. The average bottle price (traditionally the highest) for limited production wineries (producing less than 1,000 cases) declined significantly.

While dollar growth continues to outpace retail volume growth, the gap between the two narrowed significantly therefore, non-operating transactions at price points were less pronounced this month. At the same time, however, all price levels above $11 rose by double digits.

Sparkling wines significantly outperformed all other major wine varietals in the retail market, with rosé being the only wine varietal to show double-digit growth in both price and volume.