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ANALYSIS OF SHIPMENTS

2019 Direct-to-Consumer Wine Shipping Report

The Direct-to-Consumer Wine Shipping Report is an annual collaboration between Sovos and Wines Vines Analytics examining wine shipments from wineries to consumers in the United States.

To create this report, Wines Vines Analytics developed an algorithm using its database of U.S. wineries to extrapolate all direct-to-consumer shipments from millions of anonymous direct shipping transactions filtered through Sovos’ ShipCompliant platform in 2018. The model tracks sales by winery region, annual production, destination of shipments, wine type (varietal) and price points. The result is the most accurate representation of the American direct-to-consumer shipping channel.

DIRECT-TO-CONSUMER REPORT HIGHLIGHTS

IN 2018, CONSUMERS SPENT
$3 BILLION
ON DTC WINE SHIPMENTS.

Value of Direct-to-Consumer Wine Shipping
In 2018, the value of the DtC shipping channel reached $3 billion, up from $2.69 billion in 2017.

IN 2018, WINERIES SHIPPED
OVER 6 MILLION
CASES OF WINE.

Direct-to-Consumer Growth Across All Categories
In 2018, the volume of direct-to-consumer wine shipments increased by 9% to 6.3 million cases, and the average price per bottle increased to $39.70.

TOP WINERY REGIONS BY VOLUME GROWTH IN 2018

+19%
SONOMA COUNTY

+19%
OREGON

+13%
WASHINGTON

Sonoma County Overtakes Napa County
With 19% growth in volume and 18% growth in value of shipments, Sonoma County is the leading region with the most wine shipped by volume (1.8 million cases)

Sonoma County Overtakes Napa County
With 19% growth in volume and 18% growth in value of shipments, Sonoma County is the leading region with the most wine shipped by volume (1.8 million cases)

10%
OF DOMESTIC OFF-PREMISE RETAIL IS SHIPPED DIRECT TO CONSUMER

ROSÉ
SHIPMENTS CONTINUE TO SKYROCKET WITH 24% GROWTH IN 2018

MONTH-BY-MONTH ANALYSIS

Buying behavior in the DtC channel is well established. Peak wine country visitation seasons – summer and fall – drive corresponding increases in wine shipments in the same months.

Weather is also a key factor, with wineries avoiding shipping during the extreme temperatures of summer and winter.

2018 PERCENT OF TOTAL VOLUME AND VALUE PER MONTH

In 2017, major fires in California disrupted shipments and pushed typical October deliveries into November and December. As a result, the market experienced a predictable year-over-year underperformance of volume increases during the last two months of 2018, as shipment patterns returned to normal. Likewise, shipment volume in October 2018 climbed 13.1 percent year-over-year after the previous year’s fire impacted low volumes.

ANALYSIS BY WINERY REGION

Sonoma County and Oregon wineries performed well in 2018, and they drove a sizable portion of the $311 million surge in the DtC shipping channel.

2018 CHANGE IN VOLUME & PRICE-PER-BOTTLE BY REGION

Meanwhile, Oregon continued its seven-year run of growth, significantly outperforming the overall DtC wine shipping channel in 2018. The state saw improvements in both volume and value, even while increasing the average price-per-bottle shipped by 1.4 percent.

2010-2018 GROWTH IN VOLUME & VALUE BY REGION

Washington wineries also outperformed the overall shipping channel in volume and value, but with decreases in its average price-per-bottle shipped. Finally, California wineries outside Napa and Sonoma, as well as wineries located beyond the West Coast, significantly underperformed the overall U.S. winery shipping channel.

ANALYSIS BY WINE TYPE

In 2018, Pinot Noir solidified its status as the second most commonly shipped wine by both value and volume, and Rosé shipments continued their seven-year rise.

Other varietals with impressive shipping momentum in 2018 included Zinfandel (extending its gains from 2017), Other Reds, Cabernet Franc (continuing its rise beginning in 2014) and Sangiovese.

2018 CHANGES IN VOLUME OF NOTABLE VARIETALS

The top five varietals shipped to consumers in 2018 remained unchanged from the past eight years: Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot Noir, Red Blends, Chardonnay and Zinfandel. Together, these five varietals represented 60 percent of the volume of wine shipped direct to consumers in 2018.

ANALYSIS BY PRICE CATEGORY

When looking at the 2018 winery-to-consumer shipping channel by price categories, it’s clear that consumers were comfortable opening their wallets.

ANNUAL CHANGE IN VOLUME & VALUE BY PRICE CATEGORY

Wines priced $100 and above saw volume shipped increase by 18 percent over 2017. By contrast, wines priced below $30 per bottle increased shipments by a mere 6 percent.

GROWTH IN VALUE & VOLUME FROM 2011-2018 BY PRICE CATEGORY

Consumers’ migration toward higher priced wines is a long-term trend. Wines shipped direct to consumers with prices at $100 or above accounted for 4.3 percent of all shipments in 2011. Today, they account for 6 percent of all winery shipments. By contrast, wines shipped with an average per bottle price of below $30 accounted for 55 percent of all shipments in 2011. Today, they account for 51.8 percent of shipments.

ANALYSIS BY DESTINATION OF SHIPMENTS

Seven of the top 10 shipment destinations—California, Texas, New York, Washington, Florida, Illinois, Oregon, Colorado, Virginia and Pennsylvania—also fall into the top 10 states for wine production.

After a significant increase in both the volume and value of shipments (28 percent and 31 percent, respectively), Pennsylvania now ranks in the top 10 states for destination of shipments by both measurements. There is every reason to believe Pennsylvania will rise further in both categories over the next few years as shipments to the state continue to increase.

2018 TOP 10 STATES BY VOLUME OF SHIPMENTS

California remains far and away the most common destination for wine shipments, accounting for nearly one-third of the volume and value of all winery-to-consumer shipments nationwide.

2018 PERCENT GROWTH IN VOLUME BY DESTINATION STATE

Also notable, shipments of wine to Oregon residents significantly outperformed the overall DtC channel for the sixth year in a row.

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