French Champagne houses toast record sales and exports
France's Comite Champagne trade association, which represents over 16,000 winegrowers and 320 champagne houses, on Wednesday reported record high sales for 2021.
It says France exported a historic high of 180 million bottles of champagne in 2021, which is a 38% increase compared to 2020. Total shipments jumped 32% to 322 million bottles, despite the lingering effects of Covid-19 pandemic lockdowns, which resulted in the closure of many bars and restaurants. Overall, global sales hit a record of roughly $6.2 billion.
"This recovery is a welcome surprise for the people of Champagne after a troubled 2020 (with figures down by 18%) impacted by the closure of main points of consumption and the shortage of celebratory events across the world," said Maxime Toubart, co-president of the Comite Champagne.
The association reported that demand started to gradually accelerate in April 2021, explaining the change by the fact that "consumers have chosen to entertain themselves at home, compensating for the generally gloomy mood with new moments of conviviality and sharing."
'Champagne' is an exclusive brand name used for wines produced in the French Champagne region, northeast of Paris. Champagne winegrowers had a troublesome year in 2021, with the area hit by severe frosts in spring, which damaged 30% of the crop, while mildew resulted in the loss of up to 30% more.
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