New Zealand wine sales are pushing $2 billion a year with the wine industry doubling its earnings in the past decade, according to the latest ANZ Agri-Focus report, which says the growth will continue.
The sector had sales of $1.97 billion last year and has had average annual growth of 8.4 per cent in the past 10 years. This has been boosted mainly by New Zealand's renowned sauvignon blanc which accounts for more than half of the country's vineyard area, 70 per cent of production and more than 80 per cent of exports.
Author of the report, ANZ agri-economist Con Williams, said sauvignon blanc being a fashionable wine was favouring NZ sales.
"Will there be further upside for New Zealand wine? The answer appears to be yes," Williams said. "As with many goods, fashion has a role to play and sauvignon blanc remains 'in' as a wine preference in established markets and is finding favour with new consumers in developed and developing markets."
"There is scope for more growth with consumers increasingly seeking sophisticated food and beverages, a new generation of younger consumers coming through and a trend towards more premium products."
To cope with demand, plantings have increased significantly, dominated by sauvignon blanc, with other varieties such as chardonnay, pinot gris, pinot noir and merlot also on the rise, on a smaller scale.
The report showed health concerns and changing attitudes towards quality over quantity was favourable towards NZ wine.
Distribution channels were also changing with tasting rooms, wine clubs, online marketing and other direct channels increasing.
It also highlighted the contribution of wine tourism with close to one-in-five international tourists visiting wineries, spending more and staying longer.
New Zealand's domestic market and top three export markets of Australia, the US and UK account for 86 per cent of sales volumes and 83 per cent of revenue.
$1.97b of sales last year.
8.4 per cent average annual growth in the past 10 years.
80 per cent of exports is sauvignon blanc.
83 per cent of export sales revenue comes from Australia, US and UK.