Global spirits growth will slow

Around the world spirit consumption will wane at the expense of a growing interest in wine, say the experts

Whereas world consumption of spirits rose 4.56% between 2003 and 2007 reaching 2.224 billion cases, Vinexpo and IWSR analysis forecasts growth slowing to 0.36% between 2008 and 2012.

The research suggests Vodka is a star product however which will buck the overall trend, along with Cognac, Armagnac, rum, brandy and Scotch whiskey.

With sales reaching 515.06 million cases in 2007, vodka is by far the world’s leading spirit and consumption will increase by a further 5.29% between 2008 and 2012, predicts Vinexpo.

Cognac and Armagnac will maintain strong growth of 9.53% between 2008 and 2012. Rum and brandy will also continue to grow as will Scotch Whisky. Consumption of Scotch Whisky will reach 89.6 million cases by 2012.

Gin, on the other hand, continues its world decline despite efforts by major brands to reposition the product. Between 2003 and 2012 gin will have lost the equivalent of 15.52 million cases.

Overall Asia’s consumption levels are set to have an important impact on the global spirits performance. The world’s leading consumer continent for spirits, it accounted for 46.76% of total global consumption in 2007; 5.48% more than in 2003.

Between 2008 and 2012, spirits drinking in Asia is expected to decline by 2.8%. Meanwhile consumption in Europe, the second largest spirits consuming region in the world, will plateau between 2008 and 2012.

North and South America, which accounts for 18.93% of world spirits consumption, is expected to see an increase by 7.83% between 2008 and 2012.

The world decline in spirits consumption will also mainly impact on ‘local’ or ‘national’ spirits between 2008 and 2012. They are expected to lose 4.11% of their volumes over the period, especially rice-based spirits drunk in Asia. These will be replaced progressively by wine, forecasts Vinexpo.

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