Swiss wine consumption: quality over quantity

  • Wednesday 11 October 2017
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People in Switzerland are drinking less wine, especially in the German-speaking part of the country, reveals a study on the wine market. 

As Swiss Wine Promotion announced on Tuesday, wine consumption in Switzerland has been on the decline for years. The umbrella group for Swiss wine producers conducts studies every few years to monitor the market. 

This year, the group measured a major drop in the amount of wine drunk by people in German-speaking Switzerland. In 2013, 39% of those polled said they drank wine at least once a week; the percentage is now 27%. This is bad for business as German-speaking Switzerland accounts for about two-thirds of the total Swiss wine market. 

In the other language regions, figures have remained stable; 39% of French-speakers and 36% Italian-speakers say they drink wine weekly, at least. But in 1999, 60% of Swiss people said they drank wine anywhere from daily to weekly. 

One reason for the decline in wine consumption is the popularity of beer. People aged 18-29 are equally likely to choose wine or beer, whereas those over 29 prefer wine. 

According to the Swiss Alcohol Board, the average Swiss drank 54.9 litres of beer and 33.8 litres of wine in 2016, reflecting an overall drop in the consumption of alcoholic beverages. 

Swiss Wine Promotion says there is also a trend for people to drink less but therefore better wine, and that people are increasingly aware of the range of Swiss wines available. And while 46% of consumers polled go for foreign wines, 35% prefer wine from Switzerland. 

Some 3,000 people aged 18-74 were surveyed for the studyexternal link; the next will be in 2021.