Consolidation of the German wine market


After the strong increase of the wine segment in the retail sector in 2020 due to the Corona restrictions and closure of gastronomy, wine purchases in Germany again approached the pre-pandemic level last year.

These results are part of the wine market analysis undertaken by the market research institute NielsenIQ as commissioned by the German Wine Institute (DWI). According to this analysis, the quantities of wine purchased in Germany in 2021 fell by 4.7 per cent, after a rise of 7.2 per cent the year before.

Average price increased

The average price of wine in food retail increased in 2021. Consumers spent 12 cents more per litre of wine last year, which corresponds to an average price of 3.78 euros. Wines from German regions attained a slightly higher price, with the average expenditure per litre at 3.83 euros. Therefore, the turnover of the wine market in total did not fall by as much as the volume of wine sales. The decline in sales amounted to 1.5 percent in 2021.

For DWI managing director Monika Reule, this decline in sales was to be expected due to the changed circumstances of consumption compared to the previous year. In this context, however, she also points to a positive effect brought about by the lockdown two years ago: "In 2020, the share of households that purchased German wines increased significantly. Fortunately, most of them remained loyal to domestic wine, so that their share last year was still above the level of 2019," she explained.

Online trade on the rise

In addition, consumers seem to have increasingly gone online to purchase wine and are continuing to do so. According to the Nielsen survey, eleven percent of all wine purchases were made via the various online channels last year. Interestingly, the shares for foreign wine sales tended to be somewhat higher there. Compared to the previous year, this corresponds to an increase of two percentage points.

Despite a slight drop of one percentage point compared to 2020, food retail remained the most important source of wine for consumers last year with a market share of 65 per cent.

Market share of German wines stable

In 2021, suppliers of German wines were able to maintain their market share of 45 per cent of purchased wine volumes compared to the previous year, as well as their share of total wine sales of 47 per cent. Italian wines accounted for 17 percent of all wine purchases, Spanish twelve and French eleven percent.

White wines more in demand

The trend towards increased white wine consumption, which had already been apparent since 2012, continued once again in 2021 after three years of stagnation. As reported by the DWI, the white wine share of purchases is now 47 percent, which corresponds to an increase of one percentage point. This growth was at the expense of red wine consumption, which still accounted for 41 percent of wine purchases. The share of rosés remained constant compared to the previous year at twelve percent.


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