French cognac exports at record high in 2018

Cognac now represents one quarter of France's entire foreign spirit and wine exports

French cognac exports were at a record high for the fourth consecutive year in 2018, with the drink now making up one quarter of the country’s entire wine and spirit exports, to the value of €3.2 billion.

In total, 205.9 million bottles were exported abroad between August 1 2017 and August 1 2018, according to figures from the spirit’s professional body the Bureau National Interprofessionnel du Cognac (BNIC).

This represents an 8.2% rise compared to the year before.

Nearly all of France’s cognac is exported, with consumption rates in France itself relatively low compared to elsewhere.

This year’s rise in exports has been attributed to the spirit’s growing and continued popularity in China and the USA.

Last year, the far East shipped 60.9 million bottles - a rise of 13.5% - with China itself leading the market at 26.2 million bottles alone.

The USA still leads as the largest foreign market for cognac globally, with 86.5 million bottles.

According to the BNIC, other foreign markets are ripe for cognac expansion in the coming years; especially South Africa, Vietnam, Oceania and the Caribbean.

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