Market Research and Analytics for a New Era in Wine
About Vintage Economics
The wine industry is currently facing an array of disruptive challenges, ranging from demographic and generational change to competition with cannabis, that pose both opportunities and threats to wine-related businesses. Success in today’s rapidly evolving and hyper-competitive market environment demands a more systematic and strategic approach than ever before, informed by relevant data, rigorous analysis, and creative and critical thinking.
The mission of Vintage Economics, founded by Dr. Chris Bitter, is to provide insightful market research and analytics that enable clients to identify opportunities, make better informed business decisions, and position themselves for success in the new era for wine.
Based in Vancouver, British Columbia, Vintage Economics offers research and advisory services focused on market analysis, strategic research and business analytics. The firm also produces periodic research reports and provides customized metrics and intelligence on the U.S. and Canadian wine markets. Selected clients include the Washington State Wine Commission, Alexandria Nicole Cellars, Coyote Canyon Vineyard, Wineshipping.com, Fall Line Capital and Aquilini Brands.
See Dr. Bitter's blog for commentary on topics of both local and national interest and subscribe to the Washington Wine Industry Update, a free quarterly newsletter. Please contact Chris for additional information, to arrange a consultation, or to inquire about speaking engagements.
Christopher Bitter, PhD
Founder and Wine Economist
Dr. Chris Bitter, founder of Vintage Economics, is a wine economist with more than twenty years of experience in market analysis and applied economics. His research has been published in a variety of national and international publications including the Journal of Wine Economics and he has delivered presentations at wine industry conferences around the globe.
Chris left his academic position in 2016 to launch Vintage Economics with the goal of providing market analysis and intelligence to help position clients for success in a rapidly evolving and increasingly competitive market environment. He has completed consulting assignments for a variety of organizations including the Washington State Wine Commission and is developing a series of analytical reports focused on the Pacific Northwest wine industry.
Prior to launching Vintages Economics, Chris spent seven years on the faculty with the University of Washington’s Runstad Center for Real Estate Studies where his teaching and research focused on market analysis and valuation. Chris has also held senior positions as an economist and market analyst in the private sector with RREEF, a prominent commercial real estate investment advisor, and the Dorchester Group, a boutique consulting firm focused on complex valuation-related assignments.
Chris holds a Doctorate from the University of Arizona in Economic Geography with a minor in Agricultural and Resource Economics and a bachelor’s degree from the University of Michigan in Anthropology.
Research and Analytics
Separating the Signal from the Noise
Market & Economic Analysis
In today's hyper-competitive environment, accurate and nuanced assessments of the economy and market dynamics are more important than ever. A well-informed and appropriately segmented market study is an essential tool for strategic planning, identifying opportunities and risks, and developing realistic financial assumptions. But relevant data tend to be messy, incomplete, and are often conflicting.
Vintage Economics separates the signal from the noise to help clients navigate and improve their competitive position within the market. Areas of expertise include wine and grape market forecasting; strategic market assessments; demographic analysis and segmentation; market potential and targeting; land valuation dynamics; and regional economic analysis.
The proliferation of "big" data tracking consumers and their purchasing behavior, along with the growing volume of internal data wineries are collecting through their own POS software and customer databases, has the potential to transform the wine industry similar to the way that "Money Ball" revolutionized the business of baseball.
Vintage Economics leverages its data and analytical expertise to unlock insights that enable clients to more effectively segment consumers and target customers, grow their direct-to-consumer sales and wine clubs, optimize pricing, and improve operational efficiency. We also help clients to appreciate the benefits and limitations of predictive analytics and how they can exploit their data to maximum advantage.
The wine industry is facing an array of disruptive challenges including unprecedented economic turbulence, demographic and generational shifts, a rapidly evolving consumer and path to market, climate change, and competition with cannabis and emerging alcoholic beverages. This fast-paced environment presents both opportunities and threats to wine businesses.
Vintage Economics designs and executes customized research projects that help clients to achieve a nuanced understanding of emerging trends and their strategic implications and better positions them for success in the new era for wine.
Reports and Metrics
Analysis, insights and intelligence to support better-informed decisions
Demographics and Wine
Demographics and Wine provides a nuanced analysis of U.S. wine consumer demographics and their evolution through time. Households are segmented by generation, age, income, education, racial-ethnic group and sex. The report also situates wine’s performance within the context of the broader beverage alcohol market and assesses the implications of America’s evolving demographics for post Covid-19 era wine demand.
The insights it contains can inform strategic planning and target marketing and should be of interest to anyone in the wine trade seeking to better understand the demographic drivers of the U.S. wine market.
The report is based on Vintage Economics’ analysis of public use micro data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Consumer Expenditures Survey, which collects detailed two-week spending diaries from approximately 6,000 households per year. Note that the dataset runs from 2009 through year-end 2019 – thus it provides a baseline of wine consumer behavior and trends prior to the Covid-19 Pandemic.
The report includes:
Click here for the full table of contents as well as sample tables and graphics.
Price: $825 / $600 for non-profits and small businesses.
Use the online store to purchase by credit card. If you would prefer to pay by check, please call 206-981-6885.
The Washington Winery Report
The Washington Winery Report is an annual publication that provides shipment and production totals for the past year for all 1000+ Washington winery licenses as well as more extensive metrics for wineries that shipped at least 1,000 cases, including shipments broken down by sales channel and three years of historic data on total shipments and net production. It also contains industry statistics and benchmarks, a list of new and discontinued licenses, winery and satellite tasting room counts by location, and winery rankings.
The report represents the most comprehensive source of intelligence available on Washington wineries and wine shipment trends. The metrics will be valuable to wineries for benchmarking performance, growers and service providers for generating new business leads, and others seeking insight into the Washington wine industry more generally. Click here for a sample of the report.
Price: $495. Use the online store to purchase by credit card. If you would prefer to pay by check, please call 206-981-6885.
Washington Wine Industry Intelligence
Available on Demand
Leveraging its proprietary databases and industry contacts, Vintage Economics supplies customized metrics and intelligence on the Washington wine industry including:
Applications include winery performance benchmarking; targeting customers for grapes, services or equipment sales; identifying and evaluating acquisition targets; or tracking the size, structure and growth dynamics of the industry.
Click here to download a winery metrics sample.
U.S. Wine & BevAlc Imports & Exports
Available on Demand
Our comprehensive and timely metrics on U.S. wine import and export trends enable clients to better understand import demand and competition, monitor the performance of individual countries within the U.S. marketplace, and evaluate potential export opportunities.
Canadian Wine & BevAlc Imports & Exports
Available on Demand
Canada ranks 8th globally in wine imports, and imported wines (including bulk shipments bottled in Canada) comprise 85% of the market. The metrics can be broken down by country of origin as well destination province to provide a nuanced view of Canadian wine market trends.
The information contained in this report is proprietary. Purchasers may distribute the report only to employees of their immediate company and board members and consultants for use only on projects specific to the purchaser’s company. No portion of the report may be reproduced or published in any form without prior written consent from Vintage Economics.