Cheers: The UK guzzles more champagne than (almost) any other nation

Francesca Washtell
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Economic Downturn Causes Drop In Champagne Sales
The UK is the largest export for champagne worldwide (Source: Getty)

Forget global volatility - it seems Britons are ready to splash their cash, after new figures confirmed the UK is the world's largest export market for bubbly - and it's growing fast.

Champagne shipments to the UK grew 4.5 per cent by volume last year, three times the rate of growth for the world as a whole, according to new figures from the Comite Champagne.

Value grew by 7.3 per cent over the same timeframe, indicating champagne buyers are searching out higher quality producers and are willing pay extra.

In 2015 sales of prosecco overtook champagne for the first time as Brits quaffed a third of a billion pounds of the Italian sparkling wine, but the Comite Champagne figures showed the market is far from flat for champers.

In May 2015 the annual champagne report by Champagne Lanson International showed 2014 was a "fantastic" year for the drink, which looks set to have continued over 2015.

Over Christmas, champagne outsold semi-skimmed milk, which is usually the bestseller, at the budget supermarket chain Lidl.

Also bringing more fizz onto British shores in December, the renowned champagne maker Taittinger snapped up land in Kent to produce sparkling wine, buying 40 hectares of farmland to grow Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier.

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