Sparkling Wine Drives Italian Wine Exports

According to Italian farmers' association Coldiretti, Italian semi-sparkling wines, up by 11%, are at the origin of the export sales record

The world’s record for exports of Italian wine in 2018 was driven by sparkling wine, which marked a record leap of 11% compared to 2017 for a value that reached 1.51 billion euros for the first time ever. This is what emerges from an analysis by Italian farmers’ association Coldiretti based on Istat data. Without considering sparkling wines, Italian wine exports remain in fact almost stagnant (+1%) at a value of 4.69 billion in 2018.


As for export destinations of Italian sparkling wines, the ranking is led by the UK with about 435 million euros and an increase of 6%. The United States is also significant with about 334 million and an increase of 13% in value. In the ranking of the world’s favourite Italian sparkling wines there are, among others, Prosecco, Asti and Franciacorta, which now challenge the prestigious Champagne as equals. In fact, on the French market there is the greatest increase in sales, with an outstanding +18%. Although Italian sparkling wine has outperformed champagne on foreign markets, quotations per bottle are still about four times lower on the US market.


The future, however, is marked by Brexit. Almost one exported bottle out of two, among those bought by British consumers, is a bottle of Prosecco. The symbol of Made in Italy wine in Great Britain runs a big risk by the effects of Brexit. Last year, in the UK alone sales of Prosecco PDO were equal to 348 million euros. This is the result of a 20-year uninterrupted growth.

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