- Homepage for the Wine Industry

New Report Details 30% Off-Premise Sales Surge

by Andrew Adams
May 06, 2020


According to a new report on the total off-premise wine market in the United States, sales rose 30% in March to more than $2 billion.

The report combines off-premise scan data from outlets tracked by Nielsen with data on winery direct-to-consumer shipments by Wines Vines Analytics and Sovos ShipCompliant. Sales in the two channels combined for $2.43 billion in March 2020, which is 30% more than the $1.89 billion in March 2019.

The biggest year-over-year sales increase in both DtC and off-premise sales came for wines priced between $11 and $14.99. Sales for wines in this segment rose by more than 40% from $333 million in March 2019 to $467 million in March 2020. Wines priced between $15 to $19 rose 38% to $215 million in March and wines priced between $20 and $29 were up 35% to $149 million.

Total off-premise sales are bifurcated at around $20 with wines priced higher than that accounting for a large share of DtC sales while wines at prices lower than that dominate retail sales.

Sales for wines priced between $20 and $29 in March came to $44 million in the DtC market and $105 million in retail. At $30 to $49, however, DtC sales in March totaled $87 million and in the off-premise channel they came to $58 million.

The difference between the channels is even more stark for wines priced between $50 to $100. DtC shipments for wines priced within this range came to $138 million in March while retail sales totaled just $25 million.

At prices higher than $100, total sales in both channels declined in March — as consumers bought more wine at more affordable prices to stock up for the crisis — but DtC shipments still totaled more than $115 million while in retail they accounted for just $7 million in sales.

By volume, sales in the combined channels were up 29% to 22.5 million 9L cases in March compared to 17.5 million in March 2019. More than 20 million of those cases were for wines priced less than $20.

The report also examines sales by location with California leading as both the origin and destination for DtC shipments and retail sales. California wineries’ DtC shipments were worth more than $341 million in March, with about $185 million of that coming from the Napa Valley, and they sold more than $1.2 billion worth of wine in the retail channel.

Average bottle price for DtC shipments in March was $42.08, which was more than $4 less than a year ago in another effect of the “pantry stocking” sales surge. The DtC average bottle price in March was more than four times larger than the average sales price per 750 ml of $7.72 in the retail channel.

The average price for sales in the retail channel of wines priced between $20 to $29 rose by 21 cents to $23.24 in March and wines priced between $50 and $100 saw the largest average per 750 ml increase in the retail segment of $1.21 to $64.49.

Based on the retail and DtC figures, the entire off-premise wine market in the U.S. in 2019 was more than $20 billion, with $17 billion coming from retail and more than $3 billion shipped DtC.

The new report is available from Nielsen, More information as well as a complimentary copy of the first report are available by contacting

Copyright© 1994-2021 by Wine Communications Group. All Rights Reserved. Copyright protection extends to all written material, graphics, backgrounds and layouts. None of this material may be reproduced for any reason without written permission of the Publisher. Wine Business Insider, Wine Business Monthly, Grower & Cellar News and Wine Market News are all trademarks of Wine Communications Group and will be protected to the fullest extent of the law.