The Cognac Board (BNIC) today announced a record growth in 2015, with exports reaching a historical high, both in terms of volume and value. This expansion was carried by an exceptional performance in each of Cognac’s major markets, especially in North America, where industry and consumer demand continues to increase. After a strong 2014, Cognac’s growth was confirmed in 2015 with exports increasing of 8.5% in volume and 21.3% in value, for a total export of more than 168.9 million bottles and a turnover of 2.6 billion euros.
Key Export Markets
With a steady growth of 13% in volume and 39.2 % in value, NAFTA continues to climb, and is leading export markets in terms of volume, with 67.7 million bottles shipped in 2015, maintaining its first place in terms of value. This excellent performance is the result of a continued rise of exports to the United States, which reached their highest historic level in 2015 (65.3 million bottles).
After a year of mixed results in 2014, the Far East showed signs of growth with a rebound of 8.4% in both volume and value, for a total of more than 50.6 million bottles shipped to the zone during 2015. The large increase of VSOP exports to China (70% of the shipments made are to China) greatly contributed to these results. Exports across Europe confirmed the overall trend with stabilization in terms volume (+0.6%), for a total of more than 39.8 million bottles, and a sharp rise in value (+15.9%).
Continued Growth in the World
Exports to new markets in Africa (South Africa) and Oceania (Australia) increased again, both in terms of volume (+13.4%) and value (+27.6%).Together, these markets now account for more than 6% of global exports in volume, for a total of more than 10 million bottles.
Balanced Demand across Categories
Thanks to the American dynamism, the VS category continued to grow in both volume (+8.0%) and value (+27.8%), accounting for almost half of Cognac exports. With a little over 40% of exported volume, the VSOP category also showed a significant upturn with +13.1% in volume and +28.2% in value. Increased exports for both the VS and VSOP categories positively counterbalanced the decrease in exports of aged categories in volume (-4.7%), a category which nonetheless benefited a growth +8.1% in value.
2015 Production Aligned with Demand
With a yield in volume higher than 2014 (approximately 126 hl Vol/ha instead of 112 hl Vol/ha), for a yield in pure alcohol of 12.40 hl PA/ha, the distillation of the 2015 harvest should reach a level of approximately 890,000hl PA.The regulated annual yield for Cognac for the harvest 2015 is 10.84 hl PA per hectare. This level of production will allow the ever-increasing demand to be matched, while also supplying the climatic reserve.
A record year in volume and in value, the Cognac industry accounts for 20% of French Wine and Spirits exports, pulling its weight in the balance of French trade.