Burgundy: Contrasting price trends at the start of the 2015-2016 financial year

Saturday December 26 2015 by Vitisphere

At the end of November 2015, the price of white wines labelled as appellation Burgundy from the 2015 vintage dropped slightly, a trend which has been welcomed by shipping firms. The cask price fell from €850 last year to €800 this year. “This is quite good news. It will allow us to readjust our market prices, regain lost market shares and claw back some profit for the shipping companies”, said Frédéric Drouhin, chairman of UMVB, which represents Burgundy wine merchants.

Pricing trends are the same for Bourgogne Aligoté and Chablis, with average prices coming in at approximately €650 per cask, a slight “easing up” compared with last year. By comparison, wines from the 2013 vintage in Chablis were selling on average for prices in excess of €800. “In this particular appellation, we have a good quality vintage this year and volumes have improved. This will allow us to move back into the marketplace”, claimed Frédéric Drouhin.

Conversely, the average price of 2015 wines from the Mâcon Villages appellation, which has also witnessed a surge in prices since 2010, is stable compared with this time last year, at around €800 a cask.

Generally speaking, higher available volumes of white wines from the 2015 harvest, combined with greater opportunities for competitive pricing, should open up new avenues for reconquering lost market shares.

The outlook is not quite so good for red Burgundy. Unlike white Burgundy, red regional appellation wines are experiencing further price increases due to a smaller crop than last year. At the end of November 2015, they were selling for an average €950 a cask, compared with €750 during the previous financial year. “After a decrease in 2014, we are now back to a high. For an appellation with significant volumes in a highly competitive category, it will be impossible to pass on the full increase at retail level”, said a frustrated Frédéric Drouhin. On a broader level, he denounced high price volatility year-on-year which, he claims, prevents seamless market development. “We need stability and a more linear progression, which would require management of vineyard area, annual yields and buffer volumes (VCI) by the marketing board”, he concluded.


[Source: Vitisphere; Photo: BIVB]


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