Talking Trade – war of words between Russia and Champagne

  • New Russian labelling rules caused a stir in Champagne this week.
  • Bordeaux’s share of trade for the week rose above 50%.
  • Multiple vintages of Lafite Rothschild were among the most-traded wines.

Shipments of Champagne into Russia were abruptly (though only temporarily) halted this week. New Russian legislation granted the exclusive right to use the term “shampanskoye”, Russian for Champagne, to locally made sparkling wines.

Champagne producers are still allowed to use the Latin characters of Champagne on the front label but the back label must now also say “sparkling wine” in Cyrillic characters. Shipments were halted as producers made the necessary changes, though regional trade bodies and French ministers have voiced their opposition to the new regulation.

In other news, the LWIN database, which is free to all to access, now contains information on over 100,000 wine and spirits.

A complete breakdown on what’s included in the database can be found here.

Bordeaux booms

Bordeaux has seen a resurgence in market share of late. Trade share for the region has been spurred on by strong secondary market trade for the First Growths and Saint-Emilion Grand Crus. Over June and July, the two have combined for 63% of all Bordeaux trade by value.

Burgundy has also seen it’s market share by value rise year-to-date. We recently highlighted the Domaine de la Romanée-Conti to First Growth ratio which found prices for DRC had plateaued against the prices of the First Growths. This was not due to a lack in price performance but due to the First Growths rising at the same pace as DRC – both are up 6% over the past two years.

Lafite leads

Lafite Rothschild 2011 was the top traded wine of the week. It was joined by another three vintages in the top five. Overall, 17 vintages of the wine saw secondary market action this week.

Domaine de la Romanée-Conti La Tache Grand Cru 2017 diversified the top five. The wine is the fourth most traded Burgundy by value year-to-date.

Gusbourne Brut Reserve 2015 from England traded for the first time this year, adding to England’s growing total of distinct LWINs traded. English distinct LWIN11s traded in 2021 is up 100% on 2020’s full year total. During English Wine Week we covered the status of the region’s secondary market, which can be read here.