While the heatwave which struck Jerez during the Feria saw people forced to drink more refreshing things than Sherry, the trade is happy with the 30% increase in national sales for the first quarter. It seems that Jerez is reaping the benefits of the European City of Wine last year, the 50th anniversary celebrations of DO Manzanilla, the 80th anniversary of DO Jerez and the general increase in awareness of Sherry. Also we are now well into the feria season.
3 million litres were sold in Spain in the first quarter, mostly Manzanilla (1.5m litres +22%) and Fino (630,000 litres +32%). Sales are up in all categories: Cream (+23%) Medium (633%!) PX (11.5%) and Oloroso (+14%). Export sales were poorer, however, bringing the overall increase in sales to a more modest 5.4%. The traditional markets of the UK, (still the biggest export market importing 10 million litres), Holland, Germany and the rest of Europe are still falling, yet there was some good news from the US - up 24% and Japan up 56%.