Are the US switching trends?

by Eve Resnick on July 29, 2008

in General

Until a few years ago, Americans were still considered soft-drink, beer and hard liquor drinkers, thanks to a long tradition of brewing and homemade liquors. The latest figures available from the American wine industry seem to indicate a drastic change in this pattern:

Fortune Brands, maker of Jim Beam and Canadian Club, suffered a 41 percent tumble in its profits. Is it because they sold their very profitable wine division a few months ago and missed on the new trend?
UST, maker of Skoal and Copenhagen, saw the profit of its wine division, owner of premium labels Stag’s Leap and Conn Creek, increase by 25%.
Constellation Brands, the world’s biggest wine company by volume, saw its first-quarter profit jump by 50 percent, aided by its high-margin labels Clos du Bois and Wild Horse.
Brown-Forman saw its sales of wines, including Fetzer and Bolla labels, rise 1.3%.

Does it mean wine is not the elit’s drink as in a few years ago? Are Americans becoming more comfortable about buying wine? This is a very reassuring trend for the American wine industry.

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