Canadian wine drinkers cut back

 [Daily Wine News, June 4, 2020]


Canada’s monthly wine drinking population reined in their spending on wine during the recent lockdown period as the opportunity for social occasions fell drastically, according to new research from Wine Intelligence.

During the lockdown period, the majority of Canadians polled in a nationally representative survey of 1,000 monthly wine drinkers in Canada during April 2020 said they had reduced the amount of money they spent on a bottle of wine, according to Wine Intelligence’s Canada COVID-19 Impact Report.

Spend per bottle in Canada has been rising for several years. In the same survey, 25% of Canadians said they would normally spend over CAD 16 on a bottle of wine for an informal occasion and 51% said they would spend over CAD 16 on a bottle for a formal or social occasion, up from 21% and 49% respectively in March 2019.

Unlike in other markets such as the United States, where lockdown has precipitated a surge in the amount of wine purchased, Canadian wine drinkers say they have not made significant changes to the amount of wine they buy for home consumption.

However, the survey evidence shows that wine drinkers have maintained their total number of wine drinking occasions, which suggests that the wine previously being consumed in on-premise was being replaced with additional off-premise purchases.

When asked about their intentions once the virus lockdown ended, Canadian wine drinkers appear to be, on balance, quite reluctant to re-engage with social activities out of home.

When permitted to do so, 39% of respondents said they would be less likely to visit a restaurant than before lockdown, while 42% said they would be less likely to visit a bar.

The Wine Intelligence Canada COVID-19 Impact Report will be available for purchase later today. It includes latest insights pre, during and predicted post COVID-19 restrictions, including drinks repertoire, wine buying and consumption behaviours, brand health and lifestyle behaviour changes.

Commenting on the report, Wine Intelligence COO Richard Halstead said, “Canadian wine drinkers are showing a lot of caution when it comes to post-lockdown activities”.

“Bars and restaurants, and the businesses that rely on their trade, will need to make extra effort to re-engage with their customer bases to fill their tables as coronavirus-related restrictions ease.

“The wine industry is well aware of how important the on-premise is to its livelihood, not just as a revenue source but as an important showcase for aspirational and interesting products.”


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