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Drum It Up! Steel Drum Industry News, Trends, and Issues

Canned Wine Grows in Popularity

September 13th, 2016 by Dean Ricker

Filed under: Skolnik Newsletter, Wine

Crain’s Chicago Business recently reported that over the past few years canned wine has skyrocketed in popularity. "Cans are the fastest-growing packaging category for wine in the U.S.," says Bill Terlato, CEO of Terlato Wines in Lake Bluff. Canned wine sales have grown from just under $2 million nationally in 2012 to more than $14.5 million in 2016, according to a recent A.C. Nielsen report. "Whole Foods predicted (canned wine) would be one of the biggest retail trends of 2016," says Stephen Sullivan, owner and founder of Vinejoy Chicago, a wine distributor carrying both Fiction and Alloy Wine Works canned wines made by Field Recordings in Paso Robles, Calif. "So far they’ve been dead-on. I’ve sold more cans in June 2016 than in all of 2015." While canned wine has been around since the 1930s, early efforts resulted in a cloudy product that often corroded the tin cans. Those production problems persisted until about 1940, but it wasn’t until today’s new generation of canned wine that things got good. With recent packaging innovations, canned wine is slowly overcoming its image problem. Sofia Minis, a sparkling wine by Francis Ford Coppola introduced in 2004, led the way of this new generation of canned wine. "The cans have a coating on the inside that does not affect the wine’s taste or chemistry," says Marlow Bruce, director of public relations and communications at Francis Ford Coppola Winery. "You can equate the can to wine being stored in a stainless steel tank." The 187-milliliter cans of Sofia come with a straw attached, like juice boxes. Wines in cans aren’t exactly grand cru Burgundy. These are value brands meant for casual, fun consumption. But are canned wines acceptable to a discerning drinker, and do they taste the same from a can as from a bottle? Wine producers say it should taste the same whether coming from a bottle or from a specially lined can.

Though larger than cans, click here to view the Skolnik line of stainless steel wine barrels.

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