The popularity of Champagne in Australia has reached new highs and shows no signs of slowing with the 10.5 million bottles sent here in 2022, making Australia the world’s sixth largest export market for Champagne.

The number of bottles exported here in 2022 is six per cent up on 2021 and overtakes all previous records, the value of the exports grew by 17.8 per cent to €188.3m.

The Brut Non-Vintage style remains the most popular category of Champagne in Australia and makes up 88 per cent of all exports; a slight drop of two points when compared to 2021. Analysis shows that all Champagne categories grew in volume when compared to 2021 including Rosé and Vintage Champagne.

One of the key trends that is emerging is demand for lower dosage Champagne, this style has between zero and six grams of sugar per litre added as a ‘dosage’ at the final point of production.

A Champagne cuvée with lower dosage is often described as ‘lighter, drier and fresher’ and is becoming the style of Champagne recommended in restaurants for its adaptability when it comes to gastronomy.

John Noble, Director of the Champagne Bureau Australia, said: “The Champagne shipments to Australia in 2022 show that we are a dynamic and evolving market for Champagne. It has become clear that adventurous Australian consumers are searching for some of the lesser known and more boutique styles of Champagne that are now becoming available.”

Part of the growth in value has been attributed to on-premise venues, with the Comité Champagne’s report pointing to the strong way the category has rebounded from lockdowns and the emergence of new bars and restaurants all over the country.

In addition the relaxed style of contemporary Australian dining, with small plates and a selection of tastes is an ideal opportunity for wine-savvy consumers and sommeliers alike to pair many different styles of Champagne with cuisine – and wine lists are reflecting the diversity of Champagne.

Globally Champagne exports stood at 325.5 million bottles, up 1.5 per cent on 2021. Turnover in the Champagne sector overtook 6 billion euros for the first time (excluding taxes, from Champagne), an increase in of 10.9 per cent compared to 2021. It was strongly encouraged by the diversification trend among cuvées, which in 2022 gave pride of place to prestige cuvées and low-dosage Champagne.

Charles Goemaere, Director General of Comité Champagne, said: “The vitality of Champagne continued to be supported through export, which now represents more than 57 per cent of Champagne shipments. With 187.2 million bottles exported in 2022, foreign markets are gradually outranking France.

“Change was observed in the Champagne occasions of consumption. Without impacting Champagne’s status as a major symbol of celebration, there was a continuation of less formal occasions to drink it. Consumers consider that Champagne adds an extra dimension to small celebrations and casual moments. Consumers’ growing appetence for prestige cuvées was noted.

“Higher value cuvées making progress in this way represented an important part of growth in value and confirmed the positioning of grand vin with the Champagne designation.

“Champagne’s prosperity and resilience result from the work several generations of people from Champagne have undertaken. Conscious of the challenges – with the climate in particular – that it will have to take up, Champagne is getting ready for its future.

“As such Champagne took advantage of a sunny harvest in 2022 to bring in an outstanding crop in quality and quantity, and in turn build stocks back up again to meet demand from consumers in the future.”

Andy Young

Andy joined Intermedia as Editor of The Shout in 2015, writing news on a daily basis and also writing features for National Liquor News. Now Managing Editor of both The Shout and Bars and Clubs.

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