Value sales of wine continue to grow in the off-trade channel in Italy

According to a recent Nomisma Wine Report, sales of wine in generalist websites (distribution chains + Amazon) in the first six months of 2021 show a 351% increase in value and 310% increase in volume as compared to the same period of the previous year which, it should be remembered, included two months of total lockdown (and therefore exponential growth in online wine purchases by Italians).

This is still a limited incidence compared to the value of total wine sales in the off-trade channel, that is just 2%, which, added to the weight of the so called pure players, does not exceed 15%, but it is rather representative of a consolidated trend. Widening the scope of analysis to the entire off-trade channel, the first half of 2021 confirms the growth trend of value sales of wine in large-scale retail trade (+10% in Hypermarkets and Super, +2% in Discount stores) and a recovery in Cash & Carry (+18%) as a sign of the progressive reopening of bars and restaurants (Cash & Carry represents, in fact, a distribution format reserved to professionals of the Horeca channel). A recovery further confirmed by the figure for the second quarter of 2021 (when restrictions were loosened the most): +45% compared with the first quarter of this year.

In this context of growth and resumption of out-of-home wine consumption, e-commerce plays the leading role. By comparing online shopping with the cart of wines bought at the shelves, it is evident a higher average value in favor of e-commerce. Whereas in Italian large-scale retail trade stores, PDOs represent about 40% of the quantity of wine purchased (always in the first semester of 2021), in online orders this percentage reaches 54%.

The average price of wines purchased online shows a differential of about 38% in case of still and sparkling wines and of 19% in case of sparkling wines, compared to the purchases on shelves, a difference resulting from the different composition - typological, but also for brand and packaging - of the two shopping carts.

In detail, as opposed to a 12% incidence of sparkling wines on the volumes of wine purchased on shelves in Italian large-scale retail trade, in the e-commerce channel this weight reaches 16%. Moreover, again about sparkling wines, the weight of Champagne and Metodo Classico reaches 12% in the online cart as opposed to 8% of shelf sales. Even for organic wines the incidence is double in case of online shopping (although still marginal on the total, that is 2%)

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