A Sign of the Wine Times
Premier Napa Valley, a Trade-only auction organized by the Napa Valley vintners, delivered another bit of good news for the wine industry on Saturday.
A record $1,459,000 was raised, besting last year’s take by 48%. The real interesting number however is the price per lot that was attained at this year’s auction. Retailers, restaurateurs, wholesalers and others spent an average of $8,842 on 165 lots, an increase of 42% over last year.
I don’t think there is any way to read these results than to conclude that a robust confidence exists within the wine trade, evidenced by the loosening of the pocket books on the assumption that their customers will also be willing to pay more for fine, high-end wines.
But to give some perspective, following is the percentage change in price per case over the previous year for the past five years of the Napa Premier Auction
2001: UP 9%
2002: DOWN 16%
2003: UP 7%
2004: DOWN 8%
2005: UP 42%
Good times in the wine industry are completely dependent on an expanding economy. Luxury, non-essential goods follow the money. There have been a number of signals and statistics that suggest wine buying is up. This is one more signal that things are looking good.