World Drinks Less Wine Per Capita


Gains in emerging markets outpaced by sustained drops in the European Union

Posted: Monday, May 18, 2009

People are drinking wine at a slower rate, and the global recession appears to have accelerated the trend. Worldwide per-capita wine consumption fell for the third consecutive year in 2008, and is projected to fall even further, at least until early in the next decade. Last year, the world consumed an average of 3.5 liters per-capita, a full liter less than in 1990, according to The Global Drinks Market: Impact Databank Review and Forecast, 2008 edition. Current world per-capita consumption is at its lowest level in at least four decades.

Much of the blame can be placed on the mature wine markets of the European Union, where lifestyle changes have been a major factor in the decline, particularly in France and Italy, where wine has traditionally been consumed with meals. For Europeans with increasingly fast-paced lifestyles, soft drinks, juice and bottled water have taken over important roles at drinking occasions, particularly among younger drinkers. In 1980, France and Italy combined for 45 percent of global wine consumption, but by last year, their aggregate share was down to 24 percent, according to the upcoming report.

Yes. The trend has been to spend less money on wine and other things. The bubble booms of the early 2000 created many problems. Overproduction of vineyards was one and problems abound worldwide. It kind of reminds me of the vast number of ships basically abandoned outside Hong Kong harbor because the worldwide trade has dwindled.

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