PORTLAND, February 5, 2019 – Today the Oregon Wine Board released the state’s wine growth numbers for 2018 as tabulated by Nielsen, which reflect national retail store sales. The data show the state’s wineries have experienced growth in dollar value of 12.4% in 2018 versus total overall category growth of 1.5%.This equates to Oregon wine growing more than eight times faster than the overall category, which experienced an almost flat dollar growth in 2018.
Comparatively, sales for wines made in our neighboring state of California, where the majority of domestic wine is grown and made, grew at only 1.3% dollar volume.
Although Oregon wine commands an average of $16.29 per bottle, more than double the national average of $7.37, this premium price of Oregon wines didn’t deter wine lovers from paying twice the national average at retail in 2018.
“Wine is a fiercely competitive market with 10,000 American wineries, an all-time high, competing for market share with each other and thousands of imported wine brands, and it’s clear our winemakers continue to deliver value to consumers. Stimulating this demand is no easy task, either,” Oregon Wine Board president Tom Danowski said. “The new Nielsen numbers are a testament to the quality of Oregon wines and the consumer’s recognition of excellence. The commitment doesn’t just stop with getting the wines in bottle, however; even the smallest family wine businesses have to price aggressively and promote their wines effectively to wholesalers, restaurateurs and consumers all over the world. It requires a round the clock commitment all year long.”
Another benchmark recently released is the new Sovos/Wines Vines Analytics 2019 Direct to Consumer Wine Shipping Report, which shows that direct-to-consumer (DtC) sales for Oregon wines increased at twice at the level of the overall category. The report, issued annually in January, stated: “Oregon reigns as the most dynamic region for wine shipments. For the seventh straight year, Oregon winery shipment increases outpaced the overall market. In 2018, Oregon shipments increased 19 percent in volume, even with a 1.4 percent increase in average price per bottle. Strong consumer interest in Pinot noir, particularly from Oregon, is propelling this trend.”
The ShipCompliant data echo the Nielsen data in that at the upper end of the pricing spectrum, referring to wines priced over $20 per bottle, Oregon dollar sales are growing at 10.2%, nearly double the segment growth rate of 5.5%.
As for particular grape varieties, Oregon Pinot noir sales are up 15.1% in a segment that’s growing only 2.5%. Oregon Chardonnay sales are up 14.6% in a segment that’s completely flat. And although it’s a small sampling with only a few dozen sparkling winemakers in Oregon, sparkling wine sales from the state grew more than 50% in Nielsen-tracked channels in 2018.
About the Oregon Wine Board
The Oregon Wine Board is a semi-independent Oregon state agency managing marketing, research and education initiatives that support and advance the Oregon wine and wine grape industry. The Board works on behalf of all Oregon wineries and independent growers throughout the state’s diverse winegrowing regions. Visit oregonwine.org.