Now, wine sells more in the US than France

Now, wine sells more in the US than France

However, when it comes to per capita consumption, the French are well ahead at an average 46 litres per year compared to 9.8 litres for the US, The Telegraph reported.

The figures released this week by US-based Wine Institute are being seen as an important step by the industry.

"It's exciting," Stephanie Gallo, vice president of marketing for US-based Gallo Family Vineyards, was quoted as saying.

"It's great for the industry and it's great for a whole host of reasons."
The media report said that as US per capita consumption has gone up, French consumption has dropped. The US wine consumption continued to rise even during the recession, though some opted for cheaper wines.

The overall US wine market grew 2 percent in 2010 to nearly 330 million cases, according to the Wine Institute report. That compares to nearly 321 million cases in France, report author Jon Fredrikson said.

"All of a sudden, in terms of absolute volume, we're the biggest in the world, which is a huge benchmark for those of us who've been around for a while," he was quoted as saying.

The Telegraph said that estimated retail was $30 billion, up 4 percent from 2009. Wines from California accounted for a 61 percent volume share of the total US wine market, with sales of nearly 200 million cases, up 1 percent from the previous year.

Jean-Charles Boisset, president of Boisset Family Estates, a company with roots in Burgundy, France, said: "Obviously we saw it coming for many years now."

"For us it's very exciting news because we've always strongly believed that the US is the place to be and being bicultural, being in both of the biggest markets in the world is not only exciting, but at the same time allowing us to really read world consumers well."

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