Against Many Odds, the Wine Category Rebounds with Small Gains, According to the 2021 Wine Handbook

Minneapolis, Minn., (October 28, 2021) - For the Wine industry, 2020 was particularly rocky as not only did they have to contend with the pandemic overall, with the business shutdowns and the decimation of the on-premise sales, they also endured several serious wildfires on the West Coast of the U.S. and got caught up in tariff wars.

According to the Beverage Information Group’s 2021 Wine Handbook, the consumption of wine increased 0.8% in 2020 to 350.1 million 9-liter cases, vs. falling slightly in 2019. The top ten leading wine brands combined for a 5.5% increase in consumption volume for the overall industry.

“Domestic wines continue to dominate the industry,” notes Marina Velez, Research Director for the Beverage Information Group. Ms. Velez adds, “With a 77.5% share of the market, up from a 76.1% share in 2019. Most of the top-10 leading domestic brands increased significantly after posting a slight decline in 2019.”

At the category level, Table wine rose 0.7% to 315 million nine-liter cases, off-setting the dip in consumption in 2019. As with other segments of the wine category, imports—up 1.3%—fared slightly better in 2020 than domestic table wines, which increased only 0.6%.  Franzia continues to be the #1 domestic brand, posting its highest increase since 2013 while Yellow Tail remains the #1 imported brand.

Champagne and Sparkling wine grew by an overall 1.8% in the U.S. to reach 25.2 million 9-liter cases. In the domestic segment, the top five brands represent almost 70% of the category. The top three domestic brands — Andre, Cook’s and Korbel—posted consumption growth in 2020. Imported segment leaders La Marca Prosecco, Cupcake Sparkling and Risata managed double-digit gains.  

The Dessert and Fortified wine category remained in positive territory, albeit with relatively flat/weak growth in 2020, posting growth of 0.6% to 7.9 million 9-liter cases. The top three domestic brands —Richard's Wild Irish Rose, Taylor Dessert and MD 20/20—were flat or posted some consumption growth. The top 5 imported brands, which represent 42.7% of the category, managed some growth levels at an average rate of 1.7%.

The Vermouth/Aperitif category grew a minuscule 0.4% in 2020, selling more than 1.5 million 9-liter cases. E & J Gallo's, Gallo Vermouth, remains the leading domestic brand. Bacardi’s, Martini & Rossi Vermouth, realized the most gains in imported brands by growing 20.7% in volume.