The world ordered a record amount of wine from California last year

Francesca Washtell
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The Napa Valley has never been more in demand.

Shipments of California-produced wine reached an all-time high last year. Shipments worldwide grew 2.6 per cent to 276m nine-litre cases, which equates to around 3.3bn bottles.

The figures, released by the California Wine Institute, showed the golden state also shipped cases at a record level within the US, which has been the world's largest wine market since 2010. California makes around 90 per cent of all American wine.

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Around 229m cases were shipped within the country last year, reaching $31.9bn (£24.3bn) in retail value, and accounting for 60 per cent of the US wine market.

Millennials were partly behind this drive, making up almost a third of wine consumers over 21 years of age. This trend has been seen in the UK as well, where millennials are behind about 31 per cent of wine spending in the UK.

Outside the US, the EU was the top destination for US wine exports at $622m. In second place was Canada, followed by Hong Kong, Japan, China, Nigeria and Mexico.

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“California wines continue to attract global recognition for their outstanding quality and value,” Robert Koch, president and chief executive of the Wine Institute of California, said.

“Consumers are comfortable with wine, and well informed about it, which is translating to growing interest in California’s regions, American Viticultural Areas, sustainable winegrowing practices and how wine complements their lifestyles.”

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