Italy #1 in Global Wine Market

2 Mar

According to, Italy has taken over France’s coveted position as leader of the global wine market. Apparently, American drinkers are due much gratitude.

The article below was published in today’s THE LOCAL it


Italy is now the world's biggest producer and exporter of wine. Photo: Torbak Hopper

Italy is now the world’s biggest producer and exporter of wine. Photo: Torbak Hopper

Italy leads global wine market thanks to American drinkers

Published: 02 Mar 2016 14:38 GMT+01:00

“Today, one bottle of wine exported in five is made in Italy, the biggest wine exporter in the world,” Italy’s Coldiretti agricultural association said in a statement.

The country exported a record €5.0 billion worth, a 575-percent increase over 30 years, it said in the study, which examined how the sector had recovered following a 1986 methanol scandal.

The addition of wood spirits to table wine by a family business which wanted to increase the alcohol level of a poor batch had left 23 people dead and dozens of others poisoned, some suffering blindness or neurological damage.

“The image of Made in Italy foodstuffs was dramatically compromised across the world, but it was also a chance for a new start with a revolution which saw Italian wine set out to conquer first place” on the international stage, the association said.

The leap in safeguards and quality saw an increase in designations as well: 66 percent of bottles of wine exported are now classified with the quality assurance labels DOC, DOCG or IGT.

The number one consumer of Italian wine is the United States, which imported €1.3 billion worth in 2015, up 13 percent from 2014, pushing Germany into second place, with Britain ranking third, Coldiretti said.

The appetite for Chiantis and Barolos continues to grow in China, which imported €80 million worth of Italian wine, up 18 percent on 2014, while the market in Japan grew 2.0 percent on the previous year.

In October, the International Organisation of Wine (OIV) brought tears to French eyes by announcing that Italy had overtaken France to become the largest producer of wine.

Whenever we drive through the rolling and majestic hills of neatly planted Italian vineyards, I am reminded of a saying I read on the door of a restaurant:

Wine is the poetry of the earth.



Makes perfect sense to me. Complimenti, Italia. Many of us look forward to helping you keep this title!



6 Responses to “Italy #1 in Global Wine Market”

  1. Connelly, Vincent J. March 2, 2016 at 11:06 AM #

    Much more uplifting news than reading about Trump’s “Super Tuesday”.


    Liked by 1 person

  2. Larsen, L R March 2, 2016 at 12:39 PM #

    Possibly it is true what your father often said “you cannot get a bad meal in Italy”and now possibly you cannot get a bad bottle of wine in Italy.
    After all it is often said – A Day without wine is like a Day without sunshine
    Thank you for the update and thank God for Italy

    Liked by 1 person

    • blogginginitaly March 2, 2016 at 12:51 PM #

      You are so right, and yes, – un giorno senza vino è come un giorno senza sole!


  3. jean March 2, 2016 at 5:58 PM #

    Coming from California, I was intrigued about the Super Tuscan controversy where French grapes such as Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon were introduced in Tuscany to blend with the native Sangiovese.
    I tried some blends in Cortona and the result is very much a California Cabernet taste – very oaky with fruity overtones. The fact that they are aged in French barrels added to the Tuscan controversy.
    I’m happy to see Italy has decided to embrace them and incorporate these blends into their regulations but I know a lot of the local traditional farmers in Tuscany still frown on these newcomers.
    My opinion? They’re all good 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  4. karenincalabria March 6, 2016 at 3:15 AM #

    The U.S. may be the biggest consumer of Italian wine, but somehow it seems to taste so much better when consumed in Italy!

    Liked by 1 person

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