A total of 15 out of 52 independent merchants were selected to take part in the promotion, where Portugal’s broad number of DOs included Alentejo, Dão, Douro and Vinho Verde.
Participating retailers spanned Bar Douro, London; Barrica Wines, Chorley; Bonafide Wines, Christchurch; Butlers Wine Cellar, Brighton; Cambridge Wine Merchants; Duncan Murray Wines, Market Harborough; Loki Wines, Birmingham; Oxford Wine Company; Peter Osborne Fine Wines, Watlington; Philglas & Swiggot, London; Ralph’s Wine Cellar, London; Tanners Wines, Shrewsbury; Vinotopia Wine, Tetbury; Weavers Wines, Nottingham; and Whalley Wine Shop, Clitheroe.
At Philglass & Swiggot, sales were up 71% for both of the company’s stores and 678% online.
Oxford Wine Company said: “The promotion encouraged customers to branch out and try new wines – often at a higher price point. The staff training has equipped our team to continue selling Portuguese wines now the promotion has finished. The support of Wines of Portugal on social media was very gratefully received. Working with a local influencer was also a real strength.”
A representative from Ralph’s’ Wine Cellar added: “Quantitatively, sales of Portuguese wines have skyrocketed, with many customers who tried for the first time coming back to buy more. Qualitatively, customer feedback has been very positive – excitement has been generated around our campaign and people who were not familiar with Portuguese wines are very pleased and there seems an inclination to customers adding Portuguese wines to their repertoire of preferred wine styles.”
The promotion follows a positive start to the year for wine from the country heading to the UK. According to Wines of Portugal, Portuguese wine exports to the UK rose 9.41% in value and 11.47% in volume for the first three months of 2021 compared to 2020.
Export data over the 12 months of 2020 for Portuguese wine reaching the UK hit €90.34m (+16.2% vs 2019) and 275,4000 hls (+26.9% vs 2019), making the UK the third largest market for the country in value and the second by volume.
Globally, Portuguese wine was worth €846m in 2020 (3.1 mhl) last year.