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Wines from Rioja to drive UK growth as sales outpace the market

Published:  03 February, 2016

Wines from Rioja is to extend its marketing activities in the UK as sales of Rioja continue to outpace the market.

Rioja accounted for £228 million in sales in 2015, according to data from Nielsen for the year to December 5, 2015.

That represents annual growth of 4.3%, ahead of the Spanish category which contracted by 0.2% and the overall UK wine market which fell back by 1.1%.

The on-trade remains a key target for growth. Rediscover Rioja will therefore be returning for its third year, focusing on food matching with a range of international cuisines.

The Tapas Fantasticas on Tour campaign, which takes Spanish food and Rioja wines to food festivals around the UK and Ireland, will also be making a comeback. Last year, it reached over 120,000 consumers over the summer.

Wines from Rioja will also be active in the on-trade, with a Rioja Retailer of the Year award and the  return of Shop Rioja, which saw like-for-like sales volumes up 151% for participating retailers in 2015.

Other events planned include Rioja 10 x 10, the showcase for 100 of Rioja's top wines - and Rioja Recognises, an awards evening celebrating those who have made outstanding contributions to Rioja's success in the UK.

Ricardo Aguiriano, marketing director at the Consejo Regulador DOCa Rioja, said: "The UK is the largest importer of Rioja wines and is extremely important to the Rioja region. Our challenge remains to maintain focus on Rioja's premium positioning and representation in the on-trade and independent sectors, reinforcing Rioja's strong gastronomic credentials and position as Spain's flagship wine region, as well as helping to drive value growth."

Rioja now has 45% of all Spanish wine sales in the UK by value, reflecting the fact that its bottles have an average price point of £6.53, which is 31% higher than the average price for all Spanish wine.

Rioja has 4.2% of the entire UK wine market.

Some 34% of Rioja's exports come to the UK, making it the region's most important export market.