Japan’s wine imports in 2020 dropped by 7% in volume in 2020 compared with the previous year, as stay-at-home requests during the pandemic reduced wine consumption at restaurants and bars.
According to Kyodo News, Chile for the sixth time ranked as Japan’s biggest wine supplier and is the only country that saw growth during the pandemic year. Chilean wine exports to Japan during the year jumped to 49.10 million liters from last year’s 47.21 million liters, up by 4%.
Total imports of bottled wine in 2020 fell to 163.9 million liters from the previous year’s 176.29 million liters, which was buoyed by EU wine imports after signing of free trade deal between the European bloc and Japan in February last year.
France ranked as the second biggest wine supplier to Japan at 45.25 million liter, which was followed by Italy (28.36 million liters), Spain (18.68 million liters) and the US (6.39 million liters).
The government declared its first state of emergency in early April last year covering Tokyo and six prefectures. Residents are advised to stay at home, and restaurants and bars were asked to suspend business.
The decree was only lifted in late May, dealing a heavy blow to on-trade wine sales in the Asian country.