Not a drop, but a rise for South African wines in the UK

Not a drop, but a rise for South African wines in the UK

The trade body for South African wines is toasting a lift in market share in the UK last year.

South African wines increased their share of the UK off-trade to 12.3% for the 12 months to 26 December, against 10.4% in 2008, Wines of South Africa said today (20 January).

Sales of South African wine in the UK rose by 24% in value and 23% in volume for the same period, against strong comparable rises in 2008, said the trade body, citing the latest Nielsen statistics.

The off-trade accounts for the vast majority of wine sales in the UK, with multiple retailers estimated to account for more than three quarters of purchases.

The UK now accounts for a third of all South African wine exports, led by brands such as Constellation's Kumala and The Company of Wine People's Arniston Bay.

Wines of South Africa intends to build on the growth this year with publicity around the FIFA World Cup, which will be played in South Africa in June and July.