The UK produced one of its highest wine volumes on record last year and reports a continued rise in new vineyards, according to English and Welsh wines production figures.

Data released late last week highlighted an increase in the number of hectares under vine from the previous year from 793 hectares to 923 hectares, with an increase from 350 to 362 vineyards over the same period.

Some 3.37m bottles will be produced from the 2006 harvest, according to records from the Wine Standards Branch of the Food Standards Agency.

English Wine Producers marketing manager Julia Trustram Eve said: "Demand for English wines has been definitely increasing as more and more consumers become aware of English wines and the variety and styles they offer, and this is backed up by sales, rising year on year. The trade is increasingly supportive, with English Wine Week this year seeing more of both the on and off trade participate than ever before."

The data illustrates that the English and Welsh wine industry is experiencing a steady increase in the planting of vineyards, focusing primarily on sparkling wine production. Reports suggest that vineyard acreage has increased by approximately a third since 2004, yielding an increase in production by a further 58%.

The region's industry will be running English Wine Week between 26 May and 3 June.