< Back to news 26 May, 2015

Not just bubbles in short supply this summer.

Beacon, is warning that fans of the popular New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc could be facing shortages this summer. The news follows the warning last week that Prosecco drinkers will also be hit with a shortage in 2015.

A poor harvest in the popular regions of New Zealand is contributing to a smaller number of bottles in production, making one of the favourite wines of British drinkers harder to come by and more expensive to buy. This follows a vintage year for the wine in 2014 when export sales of New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc increased to $1.5bn.

Mark Holness, Drinks Buyer at Beacon, which works with more than 160 suppliers in the UK and 2,000 customers, said: “The double whammy of a possible Prosecco and New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc drinks drought will mean fans of both wines having to spend more this summer to access their favourite bottles.

“In the case of Prosecco the extra cost will result in a better quality drink as the shortage is at the entry level for a wine, which in the last two years, has outsold champagne. There is concern that supplies of New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc are also under strain following the poor harvest and we are working with our contacts and suppliers to identify the full extent of the problems. In recent years growers have also been moving away from the popular Marlborough region in New Zealand and so British drinkers might also notice a change in taste profile of the wine, which is something they may not be aware of yet."

Sauvignon Blanc currently accounts for over 72% of all wines from New Zealand. The last poor harvest was in 2012 which saw a drop in exports to the UK of 2%. 2013 was a good harvest so exports returned to levels of around 5-6% but with increased demand for the wine in Britain and a possible return to 2012 export levels, prices for 2015 are expected to rise.

Beacon Drinks Buyer: Mark Holness

“For two of the most popular wines with British drinkers to face supply problems in the same year could make this summer taste entirely different. We have already noticed that British drink tastes are changing (see below), with a return to a 1980s style drinks cabinet leading the way on the high street, but the impact of supply problems with these two hugely popular wines could accelerate those changes further.”

Beacon’s summer drinks trends 2015 reveal that British drinkers are moving towards a Club Tropicana world of theatrical, fun and sweeter drinks and away from harder, shorter more bitter drinks.

Read the full trends list here: