Nearly 880,000 people visited DOCa Rioja wineries in 2023

Nearly 880,000 people visited DOCa Rioja wineries in 2023
Nearly 880,000 people visited DOCa Rioja wineries in 2023

The Rioja Qualified Denomination of Origin breaks records. This is clear from the report published by the DOCa Regulatory Council, which estimates 879,423 visitors in 2023, 17.5% more than the previous year. The figures in this report reflect the consolidation of wine tourism in La Rioja, a wine tourism with an upward trend, uninterrupted in 2020 by the pandemic. Thus, wine tourism in La Rioja reaffirms its leadership at the national level and also establishes itself as a reference destination internationally.

The Annual Report 2023 published this Thursday by the DOCa Regulatory Council includes this data, extracted from the “DOCa Rioja Wine Tourism Monitor 2023”, a report whose sixth edition confirms the unstoppable development of wine tourism in the Denomination. Other indicators also continue to rise: the average spending per visitor at the winery rises to €37.89, marking a new high (in 2019 it was €34.66). As a whole, the economic impact of wine tourism in Rioja in 2023 was almost 186 million euros (€185,938,645), which represents an increase of 30.41 million euros compared to the previous year, generating value and jobs. employment both in the wineries of the Denomination and in the region as a whole.

Among the data in the report, it is worth noting that lInternational demand also continues to grow, with 287,561 foreign tourists, 33% of total demand (vs. 29% the previous year). The main sending markets in 2023 were the US (27%), the United Kingdom (16%) and France (14%), although they are gaining weight and the number of visitors from other origins, such as Germany or the Nordic countries, increases. .

The commitment of the Rioja wineries themselves to wine tourism is also significant, as they increase investment year after year to improve their business and adapt it to the needs of visitors. Specifically, in 2023 the DOCa wineries participating in the Monitor invested more than 2 million euros in wine tourism. In this sense, 67% of wineries consider that wine tourism is more necessary and important for their business every day.

These data have been presented to the sector at the headquarters of the Regulatory Council, in an exercise to consolidate statistics and market analysis for 2023 of the DOCa Rioja in which, together with José Luis Lapuente, general director of the Regulatory Council, Manuel Romero, managing partner of Dinamiza Asesores (company responsible for preparing the DOCa Rioja Wine Tourism Monitor), Ricardo Alcón, client development manager by Nielsen IQ and Rafael del Rey, general director of the Spanish Wine Market Observatory (OEMV).

Manuel Romero has concluded that “the wine tourism of the DOCa Rioja during the year 2023 has demonstrated a great capacity for recovery and continues its path of sustained growth, leaving the pandemic behind. Proof of this is the growth in the number of visits by 17.5% compared to 2022 and 2.5% compared to 2019, the year in which the highest figure in the historical series was recorded. Furthermore, this growth is greater in value than in number of visits, with the economic impact being 19.5% higher than the previous year, reaching 62 million euros in the wineries and 186 million in the region. This is due, above all, to the good work of the Rioja wineries and their professional teams, which continue to consider wine tourism a priority, developing more premium, higher-priced and more personalized services, in addition to making increasing investments in this area. of business”.

Closing of the commercial balance for fiscal year 2023

According to the Regulatory Council in its 2023 marketing balance, presented last February, in a bad year for the wine sector, Rioja maintained its market position, although its marketing volume fell, placing its sales at 325,197. .801 bottles. The Annual Report presented today provides new conclusions drawn from a detailed study carried out by Nielsen IQ, a leading consultancy in audience measurement, data and market analysis.

This report shows that sales of all wines with Designation of Origin fell by 2% in Spain in 2023, with this drop being 3.7% in the case of red wines. In line with the market trend, the sales volume of Rioja wines fell by 3.2%, although the DOCa continues to widely lead the category of DO wines with a 27.2% share, as certified by the consultancy. In the specific case of red wines, Rioja’s flagship, the DOCa declines slightly, but accounts for a 38.3% share, and exceeds that registered in 2021 by more than half a point. Rioja rosés showed a significant drop, if They maintained a comfortable second place, and the growth experienced by Rioja whites is especially notable, at 7%, increasing their share in the segment to 8.4% and becoming the second Denomination of white wines in the Spanish market. .

According to Ricardo Alcón, “in an environment of uncertainty in the national market where wines with Designation of Origin lost 2% of their volume in 2023, the DOCa Rioja maintains its strong leadership, with a 27.2% share in volume of sales, the same as in 2021. I would highlight the great performance of the DOCa Rioja whites, which, being one of their important bets, rise to second place in the ranking, increasing their share to 8.4%, without forgetting their main market, that of red wines, where it maintains its market share at 38.3% in liters sold.”

The data presentation carried out today has also included the main indicators provided by the Spanish Observatory of the Wine Market regarding the customs records of 2023. Although, as anticipated by the Regulatory Council, the export behavior of Rioja during 2023 was negative In absolute terms, the OEMV has announced today that, according to its data, this fall (-6.6%) was significantly lower than that of DO wines from the rest of Spain (-14.6%), which It implies an improvement in the competitive position of the DOCa in its export aspect. Thus, Rioja managed to capture 36.8% of wine exports with Spanish DO, that is, 2 points above the share registered in 2022, gaining share in these 7 main markets: United Kingdom, China, Canada, Netherlands, Norway, Mexico and Ireland.

In relation to the global sales of other international producers, Rioja also managed to improve its competitive position. 2023 was a year in which notable wine-producing powers, such as Chile, the United States, Argentina, Australia and France (-10%), experienced double-digit declines, with Rioja’s performance being better and, therefore, placing its share in 1.9% of the total volume of global sales of packaged wines.

According to Rafael del Rey’s presentation, “the slight drop in Rioja wine exports in 2023 is framed in a context of generalized and even higher drops in other Spanish wines and international wine markets. In fact, Rioja gained market share slightly among Spanish wines with Designation of Origin to account for 40.6% of the total in value and increased two tenths of share among global packaged wines to 2.1% of the total.”

The DOCa Rioja activity in full in 2023

In addition to the marketing balance and figures related to the wine tourism activity of the Rioja Qualified Denomination of Origin, the Annual Report of the Regulatory Council – which since 2021 has been published only in digital format – reviews the main milestones of the Denomination throughout the year 2023 , as well as specific activity reporting sections in key areas for Rioja such as Sustainability, national and international promotion activity and Rioja Wine Academy.

In the welcome message of the document, signed by the president of the DOCa Rioja Regulatory Council, Fernando Ezquerro, he comments that these results “are a reflection of consumer confidence in Rioja wines and, in the case of wine tourism, also for the region itself, whose recognized quality and excellence has made us one of the

most respected and most prestigious names in the world. In circumstances as challenging as those experienced in 2023, it is essential to maintain the emphasis on the diversity and richness of a Denomination, which is the socioeconomic engine of the territory in which it is working with commitment, perseverance and responsibility, putting common interests first as always. from Rioja“.

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