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Italian wine and exports: -7.3% in value among the US, Germany, Uk, Canada and Japan in 2023

Unione Italiana Vini (UIV) Observatory, on customs basis. Frescobaldi: “five countries are worth 60% of the total, need to broaden customer base”

Imports of Italian wine in its five main world markets slowed down in 2023. According to the Observatory of Unione Italiana Vini (Uiv), the final data on imports from the United States, Germany, the United Kingdom, Canada and Japan (which, together, are worth 56 % of the Italian total exports), for the made-in-Italy product, 2023 closed with a trend decline of 4.4% in volumes and -7.3 % in values, to €4.45 billion(although overall, Istat data, analyzed by WineNews, relating to the whole world, in the first 11 months of 2023, tell of a -0.6 % in value, a clear recovery over the previous months, ed.)
The analysis, conducted by Uiv - Unione Italiana Vini on a customs basis, sees decreases in volumes in all demand countries except Germany, which closes the year at +7% due to a boom in bulk wine orders (+16%). Particularly negative, partly due to an excess of stocks held by distributors that have conditioned orders throughout 2023, is the market in the United States, which totals -13% in volume, but also in Canada and Japan, both at -11%, and in Uk (-9%). In contraction, despite the surplus of production costs for companies, the average price (-3%), as a result of the import growth of bulk (+9%, where, however, price lists collapse to -11%) and large formats (+6%) and the concomitant lower impact of bottled products (-7%) and sparkling wines, down 11% in volume but the only type to grow in average price (+5%).
“It is undeniable that 2023 suffered from cyclical phenomena, especially the destocking of excess product accumulated in North America”, commented Lamberto Frescobaldi, president of Unione Italiana Vini (UIV), “but it is equally true that our country has a primary and no longer postponable need to broaden its customer base: these five countries account for almost 60% of the value of Italian exports, compared to 50% for France and 40% for Spain. The year 2024”, Frescobaldi added, “promises to be very complex and challenging: with Italian production at an all-time low, our companies will have the vital need to raise the unit value of their products, in a macroeconomic context that is not the most favorable. This was already seen last year, with the difficulties suffered in the retail circuits of the main countries, where even limited price increases were almost automatically matched by drops in volume purchases”.
According to the Unione Italiana Vini (Uiv) Observatory, the year, however, turned out to be negative for all producing countries, aided by the destocking target of importers along with the inflationary crisis and the resulting lower purchasing power. Global wine imports of the five top buyers closed at 16.9 billion euros, 7.5% less than the previous year, with volumes at -6.7%. The top exporting country, France, was on a volume trend still psull Italy (-10%), but less deficit in value terms (-5%).

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