The market for wine labels across all formats is forecast to grow by 2% between 2016 and 2018, reflecting increasing levels of wine production around the globe, according to a recent report from Alexander Watson Associates (AWA). However, growth in global wine consumption is challenged by the increasing popularity of other alcoholic beverages–particularly craft beers and some spirits–so the incentive to raise the level of visual appeal of wine labeling and packaging remains strong.

Europe currently claims the major share of global wine production, at 62%, with the wine-growing countries of South America–Argentina, Chile, and Brazil–in second place with a 10% share, and the U.S. third with 8%. These three regions also dominate the use of wine labeling materials.

Overall wine producers still prefer traditional paper label substrates over film substrates. Pressure-sensitive labels continue to capture market share from traditional glue-applied labels, with over 60% of total usage, and are forecast to grow at 2.8% per year. Their dominance reflects the sophistication and variety of printing/converting technologies–particularly for shorter runs and complex diecutting–and the efficacy of automatic label application. Glue-applied labels, with a 36% share, will also grow fractionally, while the ‘newcomer’ technologies such as sleeve labels, will increase their current small share by 7.1% per year over the same period.

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