Rabobank Wine Quarterly Q1: Evolution of sourcing strategies
2017 was a dynamic year for the wine industry, marked by short-term scarcity and rising prices, according to Rabobank’s latest Global Wine Quarterly report.
The report says while “2017 was an unusual one for the wine industry, forcing all players to rethink their short-term strategies” – changing consumer behaviour, global shifts in demand volumes and changing trading frameworks, could represent long-term structural changes.
“Although the unconventional year that 2017 was may just be a one-off, it may also be enough to accelerate deeper changes that were already developing in the wine industry,” says RaboResearch senior beverages analyst Maria Castroviejo.
Ms Castroviejo says while none of the changes in long-term sourcing strategies are new or trigged by one poor harvest, the recent events are likely to accelerate and reinforce their implementation. With longer-term strategies seeing wineries invest in vertical integration or diversifying their offer, retailers increasingly purchasing directly from producers and wholesalers, and distributors changing business models.
“All the trends suggest that, in the near future, the wine industry will continue to see sustained M&A activity all along the value chain,” Ms Castroviejo says. With France being particularly active as the largest players consistently expand their business inside and outside their borders.
New Zealand update:
US wine imports continued their upward trend, with New Zealand and France driving bottled wine imports. In the nine months to September 2017, imports from New Zealand rose by 16 per cent in volume and 12 per cent in value, mainly reflecting the rapid shift away from bottled towards bulk wine imports.