The Wine Curmudgeon thought he would follow up his look at what’s going to happen to prices and sales this year with some better numbers, courtesy of Gomberg, Fredrikson & Associates, a California company that tracks sales.
In 2008, its research found that U.S. wine sales increased less than one percent, compared to four percent in 2007. That was the smallest increase this decade. The big winner was regional wine, up 3.4 percent, and the biggest loser was imported wine. It fell nearly 3 percent, thanks to the weak dollar. Said analyst Jon Fredrikson: "Frugality suddenly has become hip as consumers face uncertain economic times."
Actually, as I noted in my two-part series, frugality has been hip for a while. It’s just that the people trying to sell us pricey wine didn’t want to believe it. The more I think about this, the more I’m convinced that the recession will give the wine business a chance to remake itself in a more consumer-friendly direction, focusing on value and quality instead of scores and bloated, overpriced wine.
More on the Gomberg report after the jump: