The top producers of English wine have seen their turnover increase by another 4.5 per cent last year.
Proceeds from British wines went from £24.3m in 2019/20 to £25.4m in 2020/21, despite sales to the hospitality sector being heavily impacted by Covid.
Sales to hospitality venues and events organisers such as conferences, awards and weddings have traditionally made up a considerable proportion of English wine sales, leaving producers exposed to the effects of repeated lockdowns during Covid-19.
As the pandemic led to more consumers drinking at home and switching from beer to wine, many English wine producers were able to successfully pivot from on-trade sales to off-trade sales in supermarkets and shops.
English wine producer turnover
Supermarkets were successful in maintaining sales growth, industry figures shared by accountancy group UHY Hacker Young show.
The boost is a testament to the growing popularity of English wine that producers have continued to increase their sales through the challenging pandemic period, according to James Simmonds, partner at UHY Hacker Young.
“The pandemic period looked like it was going to be a very difficult one for the English wine industry – it has actually turned out to be more successful than originally expected,” Simmonds told City A.M. today.
“English wine brands now have better penetration than ever into supermarkets.”James Simmonds
“Shoppers now consider English wine just as readily as they would wine from any other country – it’s no longer a novelty, it’s becoming a more regular purchase,” he added.
“As the summer event and wedding season gets back into full swing in 2022, those traditional sources of sales should return and drive sales up even further. The return of summer season events like Wimbledon will hopefully help sales too,” Simmonds concluded.