Grenache wines, valued in the USA thanks to the “European Garnacha/Grenache Quality Wines” campaign

Many Americans already identify Garnacha/Grenache wines with the international symbol of quality with European origin. And they know and value them because of the promotional campaign co-financed by the EU: “European Garnacha/Grenache Quality Wines Program”, promoted by the Asociación Garnacha Origen de España and the Conseil Interprofessionnel des Vins du Roussillon /CIVR, from France, which ran from January 2020 to February 2024.

Thanks to these years of campaigning, European Garnacha/Grenache wines have managed to seduce the palate of Americans not only for their quality, but also for their flavors and versatility when it comes to pairing with different dishes.

About 23% of wine consumers in the United States drink often, that is, once a month or more. Precisely, among these consumers and those who have drunk in the last six months, more than 75% already know Garnacha/Grenache as a grape grown in Europe, according to the latest Wine Intelligence survey conducted in January 2024 in the USA. France and Spain are the top countries for consumption.

In fact, the consumption of this European variety has also advanced in the last two years; now it is consumed by 1 out of 5 wine drinkers, 20% of them. Compared with the consumption of this variety in 2022 (16%), it has increased by 4 points.

In addition, most Grenache wine drinkers, over 80%, think those wines are of high quality, this proportion is on the rise since 2022 (+5ppt vs Y1).

Close to 50% of US regular wine drinkers have already seen the PGI / PDO logos, and just under 20% know their meaning. About 3 in 4 understand the logos to be indicators of a product’s geographic origin and traceability, and approximately 60% consider them symbols of quality assurance.

These good figures confirm that the “European Garnacha/Grenache Quality Wines” campaign has given greater visibility to these wines among American consumers, who today have a better understanding of the link between Garnacha/Grenache and European quality products. In fact, 70% of respondents by Wine Intelligence are, likely to very likely, change their list to integrate more Garnacha / Grenache wines in the next 12 months.

In short, the Balance Sheet The Campaign Developed in the United States has been positive: it has achieved millions of Impacts thanks to spreading messages related with the story of the grape Garnacha/Grenache and its Quality Standards. The origin of its quality standards has been talked about, and the terroir where they are grown, the harvest, its characteristics, traceability, tradition, pairing, consumption, versatility, technology, and the diversity of the grapes, colors, flavors…, etc.

Activities that have reached the public

To make Grenache known to thousands of American consumers, a special program has been organized – called ‘European Garnacha/Grenache Quality Wines’ – which has included a wide range of activities such as the dissemination of Grenache information in the American media, participation in walk-around tastings, attendance at fairs in the main cities of the USA, such as New York, Miami, San Francisco, Dallas, Chicago, Los Angeles and San Diego, invitation to visit the “Garnacha Grenache Land” to journalists and professionals, tastings in the major U.S. wine supermarket chains and online marketing.

Another stellar event of the campaign was the celebration of the 11th edition of the International Competition ‘Grenaches du Monde’ that took place in the USA in June 2023, under the slogan “From Europe to the World”. This novelty broke with the tradition of celebrating this event, that since 2013 had been organized in Europe. American professionals from the wine industry evaluated around 800 excellent grenache wines from all over the world.

On September 14th, on the eve of International Grenache Day, the participants of the competition were honored in what was the largest Garnacha/Grenache tasting ever held in the USA. A special gala was held in which the Mayor of New York, Eric Adams, proclaimed International Grenache Day in the city, while experts and personalities from the wine sector lived a unique experience.

During the 3 years of the program, European Grenache/Garnacha wines have been represented at the major American wine trade shows and events. From Vinexpo in New York, to IBWSS San Francisco, SommCon in San Diego, and from TEXSOM to WSWA in Las Vegas, a big part of the United States territory was covered through this presence, providing a unique opportunity for the American market to discover first-hand the quality, flavor, diversity and tradition of these wines.

Grenache was also the protagonist of 16 seminars in total, conducted by some of the leading experts in the sector, all within the framework of these important trade events. A series of successful meetings that had highlights at Vinexpo America (New York, 8 March 2023) and SommCon (San Diego, 10-12 September 2023), where they were completely sold out.

Possibly the most ecofriendly grape

In all these meetings, Garnacha/Grenache has been presented as one of the most planted grapes in the world, and one of the most ecofriendly. Its origin goes back to Europe, where almost 93% of the world’s plantations are located, specifically France and Spain where the highest concentration is at.

This variety was presented as one of the most resistant to drought, but it is also self-sufficient, adaptable, and self-sustainable. Its strong roots dig deep into the soil in search of moisture and nutrients. It is known as the non-water-stressed variety because it does not depend on rainwater or irrigation like other grapes. All this was recognized at the World Conference on Climate Change and Wine held in Marbella (Spain) in 2011, where it was pointed out that “Garnacha/Grenache is possibly the most ecological grape in the world”.

Also, during this promotional campaign, special efforts have been made to raise awareness among the American consumer of the importance of the European quality labels and their value in guaranteeing the quality of this product to the consumer. And the different specificities that accompany EU agricultural production that have been made known are food safety, traceability, authenticity, labelling, nutritional and health aspects, respect for the environment and sustainability; and its characteristics in terms of quality, taste, diversity and traditions.

The wide diversity and the pairing possibilities of this variety have also been responsible for many followers, and for many interactions from our fans on social media during the 3 years of the program.

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