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New Zealand canned wine exports expected to grow by millions of dollars as Wairarapa winemakers expand to the United States

Joiy Wines exports its canned wines to the United States after being approached by Wholefoods.


Joiy Wines exports its canned wines to the United States after being approached by Wholefoods.

One of New Zealand’s largest canned wine exporters has launched a multi-million dollar expansion in North America as its share of the global small-format wine market grows.

Joiy Wines, the first local winemaker to export canned wine, now produces more than 700,000 cans for five markets around the world each year.

The company is on track to double its annual sales volume this year and is now Canada’s best-selling canned wine, the world’s largest buyer of alcohol and one of nine countries where the government operates sales. retail alcohol as a monopoly.

Joiy Wines’ arrival in the US market follows the brand’s approach by the $ 16 billion Wholefoods store chain, following a victory in a major canned wine competition.

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Cath Hopkin, co-founder of Joiy Wines, said the wine industry can be a threat to many and has struggled to attract an emerging millennial clientele.

Their goal has been to put top-of-the-range wines in small-format packaging.

“Originally we could see that the spirits and beer categories were thriving in small format and yet the wine was nowhere to be found,” she said.

Joiy Wines co-founders Chris Archer and Cath Hopkin.


Joiy Wines co-founders Chris Archer and Cath Hopkin.

“So we saw an opportunity to specialize in this category and moved our entire product line to cans. “

The international canned wine market is growing at a rate of 13% per year and is expected to reach more than 807 million dollars by 2028. In contrast, the category of bottled wines is stagnating with a growth rate of 4%.

But the wine industry has struggled to attract millennials, and small-format options are increasingly seen as a mechanism to deliver a more portable, environmentally friendly, and portion-controlled product for this concerned segment. of his health.

“Domestic and export demand is now there, and we see small format wines resonating strongly with millennials as well as our primary target demographic aged 35 and over who choose these products for a range of reasons. convenience and health – such as portion control, reducing alcohol, sugar and calories, ”Hopkin said.

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“In addition to providing a vessel that connects with consumers from a design standpoint, the development of canned wines has allowed us to address a number of shortcomings in the bottled wine format – including challenges associated with it. the heavier shipping weight and the brittleness of the glass.

“The technology we use has now advanced to the point that the can liner protects premium wine better than glass, preventing light hits and allowing us to produce a stable product for four years – a significant competitive advantage. for us in the international market.

Chris Archer, winemaker and co-founder of Joiy Wines, said that when they first came up with the idea of ​​producing canned wine, they first encountered a lot of resistance from the industry. local winery.

“Today it is much more recognized that the level of innovation that we are introducing is the way forward for New Zealand wine.”

Archer said the successful entry into the U.S. market would put pressure on an already limited local supply of grapes, with projections suggesting their production volumes could increase tenfold overnight.

The duo’s latest innovation is a line of seltzer water along with their canned wine cocktail Mimosa, which are already registered with the world’s largest buyer of alcohol, the LCBO in Canada.

Hopkin says their original sparkling white and Roses have held a number one position there for four years.

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