Champagne sales fall in festive season

December 23rd, 2008 - 3:36 pm ICT by IANS  

London, Dec 23 (IANS) Champagne sales have been falling in keeping with the tone of global doom and gloom, according to new figures, but manufacturers say people should be drinking up the bubbly to keep up spirits. Champagne sales fell by 16.5 percent in October compared with the same month last year, according to the latest figures from France’s champagne board, the CIVC.

Exports to Britain fell by eight per cent in the first nine months of this year, while sales to the US were down by 17 per cent.

These falls were recorded before the full impact of the financial storm, according to media reports here.

But the Daily Telegraph quoted Pol Roger president Patrice Noyelle as saying: “The credit crunch and the slowdown in the real economy are starting to hit us.”

Noyelle said the paper sales of his world famous brand “are dropping in England, Australia and Sweden. But when you look at other industries - take cars, for example, well, 2008 won’t be the record year for the industry that it was in 2007 but it will still be a good year.”

“You need to feel good, to feel happy to drink champagne. It’s a way of life. And when the environment is not so good, people perhaps don’t feel quite like drinking as much,” said CIVC spokesman Daniel Lorson.

But he added: “Champagne can be a remedy to the current atmosphere.”

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