IT is bad news for the sherry business as sales of rival tipple port take over for the first time in the UK.
The change is down to the fact younger audiences are being more and more attracted by port, the fortified wine from Portugal, with sherry – a similar product originally from Jerez in Andalucia – still very much associated with the elderly.
Research by analysts Nielsen show more than a fifth of port is drunk by 24-44 year olds and under a third is drunk by the over 65s.
Meanwhile half of sherry sales are made to the over 65s.
In the last 15 years sales of port have mushroomed by 50% to €93 million annually – while sherry sales have fallen over a quarter and are now worth €110 million.
If the current trend continues, port sales will surpass those of sherry by 2020.