THE US WINE MARKET, the largest in the world, continued to show strength in 2O16. The segment grew 2.4% to 341.1 million 9-liter cases led by a 6.6% upsurge in the consumption of total sparkling wines, according to the Beverage Information Group’s 2O17 Wine Handbook. A strong economy, employment and wage gains, and larger discretionary incomes all contributed to the category’s growth. Total domestic wines accounted for 76.8% of the wine category, up slightly from last year. The number of US wineries grew, topping almost 83OO, up 4%. California, the largest wine producing state, capitalized on the increasing popularity of its premium and super-premium wine segments in 2O16. Wines produced in Oregon and Washington also continued to show promise as consumers are demonstrating their willingness to explore wine beyond the California segment. The premiumization trend in the wine market has not slowed but rather continued to evolve in 2O16. Consumers continued to seek premium and high-end brands while sales of wines priced under $1O weakened again this year with wines in the $1O to $2O range thriving. In fact, many major brands had trouble staying top of consumers’ mind as was also the case in 2O15. Smaller brands are becoming more attractive as word of mouth and social media platforms create unique awareness that is not found in traditional advertising mediums. Table wine grew to 3O9.4 million 9-liter cases, a 2.2% increase over 2O15. The Champagne and sparkling wine category grew for its 15th consecutive year to 22.1 million 9-liter cases, up an impressive 7.8%. Domestic sparkling wine reached 11.9 million 9-liter cases resulting in a 5.2% increase in volume, continuing an eleven-year growth streak.