Slovenia is a traditional wine producer. As relatively small country (with the area of 20.271 km² and population of 2,1 million) Slovenia produces yearly between 800.000 hl and 900.000 hl of wine on app. 17.500 acres of vineyards. Vineyards are located at steep slopes which on the one hand makes the production of wine rather expensive while on the other hand enables production of high quality grapes. Consequently, the production of high-end wine presents 70% of the entire production. The Slovenian market is characterized by numerous smaller producers who are producing a high-quality (high-end) wine. White wines represent 68% of the total wine production in Slovenia.
Although the per capita consumption in Slovenia (with 35.7 litres per capita per year) is relatively high, the domestic consumption is decreasing. The volume of export increased through the past years. Slovenia exports mainly high-end wines. On the other hand, Slovenia imports mainly wines without protected designation of origin and lower-end wines, because there is a local shortage of such wines due to characteristics of Slovenian production and consumption.
As a result, the following factors can play in favour of foreign producers of medium or low-end wines: the average consumption of wine per capita is among the highest in the world (about 35.7 lt each) and domestic production of mid and low-end wines is insufficient considering the characteristics of local consumption.
In summary: not a big market, but a market characterized by big consumption with a shortage of domestic wine of lower quality. On the other hand, high-end wines are highly appreciated amongst certain population niches who are willing to pay for the high quality, which offers oppor-tunity also for high-end wine producers. All the above mentioned may offer different chances for producers having a clear distribution strategy.