Consumer Attitudes and Behaviors towards Wine Purchases: Consumption Patterns (Part II)

By: Abby Miller

In our first “Consumption Pattern” post, we focused on the change in participant wine consumption and looked at the reasons behind the change in consumption between 2010 and 2013. For this post, we will be looking at differences in consumption for men and women and how this could potentially affect your marketing strategy.

July 2014_Abby_wine tasting

Figure 1 depicts the percent distribution of how often survey participants reported consuming wine annually. The group with the greatest percentage of participants, 26% of respondents, indicated that they consumed wine “a few times a week,” followed by those who drank wine “two to three times a month” (23%). Though it is the smallest category, 7% of participants responded that they consumed wine “daily.”

Figure 1. Annual wine consumption patterns for survey participants

Figure 1. Annual wine consumption patterns for survey participants

Looking at Figure 2, below, you will see the frequency which participants consumed wine segmented by gender. The consumption category “consumes wine a few times a week” contained the greatest percentage of participants. Consumers in this category, along with those who responded that they drink wine “daily,” make up the category know as “super core” wine drinkers (consumers who drink wine at least once a week) ( Other consumption categories with approximately 20% of participants included those who consumed the beverage “about once a week” and “two to three times a month.”

According to the Wine Market Council’s data, 8% of the wine drinker population in the U.S. consume wine “daily,” 26% consume wine “several times a week,” and 66% drink wine “occasionally.” Our data indicates that Mid-Atlantic wine consumers who participated in this survey consumed wine as frequently as the rest of the U.S.

July 2014_Abby_freq drink wine

Figure 2. Frequency which participants report drinking wine during an average year, segmented by gender. “z” – Percents with different letters within columns (e.g. “daily,” “a few times a week”) represent ANOVA tests where values are significantly different at the level of P ≤0.05

It is often assumed that women are the primary wine drinkers in households and, as stated in a previous post, women make a majority of the “everyday” wine purchasing decisions. Our research indicates; however, that a greater percentage of males consumed wine “daily,” nearly double the percent compared to female participants (11.2 and 5.0%, respectively). There were no significant differences between males and females for any of the other consumption frequency categories.

If wineries compare their customers’ consumption behaviors and gender, and if promotions do not seem balanced with a majority of the focus on only female customers, it may be advisable to develop promotions the appeal to males, since our research indicates men are out drinking women “daily” by nearly double (pick it up, ladies!).



Abigail Miller is a Master’s student at Penn State University, specializing in wine marketing. Her interests lie mainly within understanding the marketing and social media strategies appropriate for independent wineries, but she also enjoys learning about the production and wine making side of the business. Her hope is to one day become knowledgeable in all aspects of running a winery.

Research & Thesis Advisory Team:

  • Kathleen Kelley, Professor, Horticultural Marketing and Business Management, The Pennsylvania State University
  • Jeffrey Hyde, Professor, Agricultural Economics, The Pennsylvania State University
  • Denise Gardner, Extension Enologist, Department of Food Science, The Pennsylvania State University
  • Brad Rickard, Assistant Professor, Charles H. Dyson School of Applied Economics and Management, Cornell University
  • Ramu Govindasamy, Professor, Department of Agricultural, Food and Resource Economics, Rutgers University
  • Karl Storchmann, Clinical Professor, Economics Department, New York University; Managing Editor, Journal of Wine Economics
  • Rob Crassweller, Professor, Professor of Tree Fruit, The Pennsylvania State University

 The project “Developing Wine Marketing Strategies for the Mid-Atlantic Region” (GRANT 11091317) is being funded by a USDA Federal-State Marketing Improvement Program grant, whose goal is “to assist in exploring new market opportunities for U.S. food and agricultural products and to encourage research and innovation aimed at improving the efficiency and performance of the marketing system.” For more information about the program, visit


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One response to “Consumer Attitudes and Behaviors towards Wine Purchases: Consumption Patterns (Part II)”

  1. Jessica says :

    Fantastic article! Glad you shared! I never would have guessed that males were the top daily drinkers.

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