Price hikes prompted by currency fluctuations have taken their toll on overall sales of Australian wine.

Off-trade sales of Oz wine have fallen 6% by volume and 1% by value year-on-year [Nielsen 52w/e 30 September], while the average price for 75cl has risen 5% to £4.81 over the same period. 

The strength of the Australian dollar has hit export volumes, according to the latest figures in Rabobank's quarterly wine report, which showed an 11.8% decline in Australian wine exports to about 392 million litres between January and September. 

As shoppers become increasingly cash-strapped, country of origin was likely to become less important, said Nielsen drinks analyst Stewart Blunt. 

"Several brands have also extended their range from their original country, so unless you read the small print you'd never know," he said.