Be Bold. Break the Mold! May 31, 2017

It’s well documented that Millennials—79 million Americans ages 21 to 38—have become a prime market segment for wine producers. Last year, this cohort drank 42% of all wine in the US, according to research from the Wine Market Council. Because of their growing influence, Millennials, especially women, are driving trends in nearly every area of wine making and packaging. For example, while Boomers have traditionally bought California wine, Millennials are more experimental, purchasing wines from a variety of producers, from Oregon to Chile and even New York, and are “rabid cross-drinkers, drinking not only wine, but beer, spirits, and sparkling drinks. When buying wine, they tend to select more eclectic wines that may cost $20 or more.

This same appetite for experimentation also holds true in wine packaging. Many Millennials purchase wine based on the design of the label alone, according to a study led by Nicholas E. Johnston at Texas Tech University; they are attracted to simpler, modern, and sophisticated design elements, and they like to have information about the wine, producer, and eco-friendly programs on the label, since the environment is important to this cohort. In general, Millennials are “willing to purchase new or unfamiliar products, if there’s a perception of value,” so packaging that touts value and tells a winery’s local, ecological story would be appealing. You can find the study here:

In addition, a January 2017 PRNewswire survey found that “95% of wine drinkers prefer drinking wine that comes in a glass bottle, with taste (80% total/78% Millennials) and quality (81%) leading as the top reasons consumers prefer wine packaged in glass. Younger generations don’t rely on the style of the bottle when purchasing a wine. (Interesting footnote: 55% of wine drinkers surveyed noted that single-serve glass containers were “just the right size.”)

So why not meet the Millennial challenge and be as bold as they are with your packaging? Why not experiment with conventional factors like weight versus shape or what has been deemed appropriate for your varietal? Perhaps a Pinot Gris in a hock, or in a Burgundy or Bordeaux bottle? Maybe a Chardonnay in a Burgundy Antica? As “The Glass Bottle Specialists” my team at Global Package will search the world over for the glass shape that’s perfect for your wine and the story you want to tell.

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