Italian wines remain on top in Russia

Italian wines remain on top in Russia

In 2016, alcohol prices will increase by some 10-15%. Later, it is believed to reach 20% growth. That’s what forecasts the director of the Research Center for federal and regional alcohol markets
January 8, 2016

In 2016, in Russia, prices on alcohol drinks will see 10-15% increase. Then, the increase could even reach 20%. That’s what the director of the Research Center for federal and regional alcohol markets Vadim Drobiz forecasts. He believes that in 2016 wine lovers will be forced to pay more for a bottle, especially if it is an imported wine.

“Since Russian wine market is highly dependent on imports, prices are influenced by what is going on in Europe, for instance, should it be a poor grape harvest, prices will rise up by 20% ,” Mr Drobiz said.

In 2015, the prices on imported alcohol have increased by 20-25% compared to the previous year, while prices on Russian alcohol have seen only 10-15% increase. What’s more, taking into account the collapse of the Russian ruble, it is not surprising that Russian consumers have turned to national products, which are relatively cheaper than imported goods.

No coincidence that some of the Russian newspapers have dubbed 2015 a year of Russian wine. In twelve months, local production experienced a real boom following the so called policy of import substitution. According to Rbk (), in the first quarter of 2015, three out of four purchased bottles of wine in this country were produced locally.

«Russian wines have become more demanded than in past years,» said Andrei Abramov, the sommelier of a wine bar (I Like Wine) in Moscow. Three years ago it was very difficult to sell domestic wines as they were associated with low quality. However now, people start to like it». Most popular are Krasnostop Zolotovskij from Rostov and Krasnodar regions, the Château le Grand Vostock and Lefkadia. “Weak ruble forced customers to change their habits. They choose more carefully what they buy and what they have to pay for it».

So, looking at all the mess on Russian market, which niche products Made in Italy could take? “Close cooperation between Russia and Italy market players is important to contribute to brand awareness,» Mr Abramov explained. Wine tasting, for instance, is a useful tool for product introduction to the market. «Recently, we have organized such events for Lunae Bosoni, la Tenuta Bibbiano, and Primosic. On average, it sees a participation of dozens people, 27 to 35 years old. With 2,000 rubles per person we offer five different wine tastings with snacks».

Despite the efforts of Russian winemakers, Italian wines are always to be in top. “It is true that Russian wines are getting popular but Italian wines are still to be best seller product. The same goes to French ones. Chianti and Pinot Grigio will always be demanded.»