Wine still favourite as consumers tighten their belts

Wine remains the most popular choice of drink in the UK but consumers are still most likely to cut back on going out to eat or drink in order to save money, according to a poll commissioned by the WSTA on the eve of the London International Wine Fair.

The Populus poll* found that 38% of the public drink wine on a weekly basis, compared to 32% for beer. What’s more 81% of drinkers had tried wine, ahead of beer (71%) and spirits (72%).

But the survey also found that the economic crisis has had an impact on consumer spending habits, with 77% saying they have made cut backs over the past few years. With 80% of respondents saying they have seen alcohol cost rise in the past 2 years, activities such as eating out (79%) and going to the pub (59%) were two areas where consumers had cut back already.  With less cash available 72% said they would spend less on eating out, 69% said they would spend less on going to a pub or bar.

Generally, consumers still had concerns about the state of the economy with nearly half of respondents (49%) predicting the economy to worsen over the next year and only 15% expecting to see an improvement.

However, despite the tough economic climate, the study also showed that the most important factor for consumers when choosing wine was whether they knew or liked it. 67% of respondents regarded this as the most important factor when choosing a wine, slightly ahead of it being on special offer (64%).

Commenting on the survey, Gavin Partington, Interim Chief Executive of the WSTA said:

“Wine continues to be the most popular choice amongst drinkers but the tough economic times continue to have a real impact on consumer spending. While price and promotion remain important factors in determining what people buy it’s interesting that a greater number say it’s more important to have a wine they know they like.

“This suggests the industry has a challenge to persuade consumers to be more adventurous and try something different.”

The full results of the survey will be available on the WSTA Stand (i36) at the London International Wine Fair.


Notes to editors

*Populus interviewed 2,007 GB adults online between 4th and 7th May.  Results have been weighted to be representative of all GB adults.

The WSTA is the UK organisation for the wine and spirit industry representing over 340 companies producing, importing, transporting and selling wines and spirits. We campaign to promote the industry's interests with governments at home and abroad. We work with our members to promote the responsible production, marketing and sale of alcohol.

For more information please contact Gavin Partington:
Tel: +44 (0) 20 7089 3876
Mob: +44 (0) 7966 014058
Email:      [email protected]

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