Global shipments of Cognac were up 3.1% last month, thanks to a surge in the US, according to the region's trade body, BNIC.

Global shipments for the rolling 12-month period to 30 November were down 6.6%  in volume and 4% in value, compared to a year earlier, however.

Volumes totalled 148.7m bottles, while the value of shipments was just over EUR1.6bn (US$ 2.34bn). 

"The 12-month picture more accurately represents the prevailing trend as shipments can fluctuate quite considerably from one month to the next simply as a result of buyers advancing or postponing their purchases," a spokesman for the BNIC told just-drinks today (18 December).

"Shipments are down but these figures in no way point to a growing crisis in the sector.  2007 was an exceptional year and 2008, while less strong, will nevertheless be very good."     

The value of shipments had fallen less than volumes as a result of the now-established customer preference for more upmarket, higher-priced Cognacs, he said.