The forecasts for wine sales in the Netherlands, in which Spain consolidates as the fourth largest supplier, with approximately 12% of the total market share, are that they will increase both in volume and in value, after the decline caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.
According to the report of the Ministry of Agriculture of the Embassy of Spain in The Hague, reproduced by the ICEX Spain Export and Investments, the volume of sales of still and sparkling wines is expected to increase, but not that of fortified wines.
In addition, wine importers expect that organic wines will succeed in consolidating an important segment of wine marketing in the next five years, taking into account that there has been a significant increase in demand for this type of wine by specialized stores, supermarkets and «catering» companies.
In 2019/20, the leader in the sale of Spanish wines was cava, with approximately 4.4 million liters sold in that country, followed by Rioja, with 4.1 million; Jerez, with 3.8 million; Rueda, with 3.4 million and Utiel-Requena, with 1.6 million.
Last year, the Dutch market invoiced €4,470 million (+3.7%), with a total volume of 339.8 million litres (-0.7%). The trend in the Netherlands, isolating the effect of the pandemic in the sector, is to go from 2015 towards lower consumption in volume, but with a constant growth in the value of sales.
Thus, in 2022, demand for wine is expected to increase by 2.2% and value, but decrease by 9.6% in volume, according to data from Statista, while, from next year 2023, the value of sales could be higher than the preIt is a pandemic that has continued to grow annually in terms of both value and volume.
During the past year, Dutch wine imports reached €1,442 million, 26.7% more than in 2017, with a volume of 495 million liters (4.95 Mhl), 14.5% more than in that year. Its exports (rather re-exports) of wine grew 74.5% in 2021 compared to five years earlier, to 506 million euros.
Still and fortified wines were the most imported categories, reaching a value of more than €1,227 million in 2021, while sparkling wine registered a strong increase in recent years, which was 30.8% of the value in the period 2017-2021 and 89.9% in 20202021. Bottled wines of less than 2 liters are leaders in imports in volume and value, while, on the contrary, those of bulk wine continue to fall as in previous years.
As the fourth supplier, with a share in value of around 12% of the total wine imported by the Netherlands, our country lags behind the leader France, followed by Italy (third in volume) and Germany (second in volume), increasing its presence in 2021, Chile, South Africa and Australia are the most important suppliers.
The value of Spanish wine imports grew by 19.5% in value, invoicing for 155 M€, and 16% in volume, with 61.6 million liters, at an average price of 2.51 €/liter, over the past year, according to data collected by the Spanish Wine Market Observatory (OEMV). Wines with D.O.P., wines without D.O.P. packaged, sparkling wines and wines without D.O.P. in bulk were in that order the most commercialized in this country.
Trends and prospects
Most wine purchases in the Netherlands are made in supermarkets. Around 80% of sales of red, white and rosé wines during 2020 were priced at less than 4.5 euros/litre. The wine is consumed mainly in homes, with the traditional 750 ml glass bottle as the most consumed retail format. While beer was the most consumed alcohol drink in this country, with 3.07 liters «per capita», followed by wine, with 2.65 liters and spirits, with 1.17 liters per person.
Among the main trends and perspectives that the report describes for this market are lower consumption of beverages with high alcohol content; demand for wine with lower alcohol content and white wine will increase; increased demand for products of organic origin or certified organic, as well as wines with a lower sugar content, accepting innovations in packaging.
On the other hand, it expects to increase the purchase through online channels (Internet) in the next four years, standing in 2023 above pre-pandemia values, and that the consumer also demands greater transparency of the value chain and the production process. Also that the certification at source becomes an increasingly relevant value and that it goes towards a greater sophistication of the consumer’s taste hand in hand with the main retail chains.
Retailers, specialized wine shops, «delicatessen» products and importers consulted to make this report indicate that the Dutch consumer knows European wine well, which is by far the most sold. Most already know what wine they are going to acquire before going to the store.
Spanish wine is considered a very interesting product, as it is very versatile (categories, grapes, regions, etc.) and its price is even lower than its closest competitors, such as French and Italian wines.
The consumer of this country not only knows the wine of Rioja, but increasingly buys wines from other areas (Rías Baixas, Ribera del Duero, Priorato, etc.), although the assortment of Spanish «premium» wines is still behind its competitors. With the pandemic, the consumer of wines has been able to meet others that before the confinement did not acquire to have a higher price and that has continued to consume later, although in smaller quantity, but of higher quality.
Although the image of Spanish wine in the Netherlands is generally good, there is still room to improve its presence.
Finally, in order to enter or improve the entry into the market of Dutch wine, the report offers a number of recommendations, such as that it is not necessary to speak their language in order to establish commercial relations, But a fluent level of English is absolutely essential.
You must have a good partner/distributor, who knows the market perfectly and facilitates the entry of the product at the points of sale, in addition to paying close attention to the appearance of the product (labeling, bottle, capsule, cork…) and carefully choose the buyer or distributor to jointly develop a marketing plan, setting real goals and delivery times.
Finally, it is recommended to be faithful and not frequently change distributor and, when it begins to sell, it is important to always send the agreed volume without variations, with the quality and the agreed price within the agreed delivery time, Besides distinguishing itself from the competition with bottling and modern and attractive labels.