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A Stunning Visualization Of America’s Wine Industry

America’s wine industry is booming.

But a new study from Michigan State Professor Philip Howard shows “industry” maybe something of a misnomer.

While you may see a wide variety of American labels at your local wine shop, the vast majority are merely offshoots of mega producers, most of them concentrated in California, Professor Howard found.

He concluded:

Although it is not at the same level as the beer and soft drink industries (where two firms control approximately three-quarters of all sales in the U.S.), the wine industry is becoming more concentrated each year. A large number of acquisitions and mergers have taken place in the past decade, such as Constellation Brands acquisitions of Mondavi ($1.3 billion in 2004), Vincor ($1.3 billion in 2006) and Fortune Brands’ wine business ($885 million in 2007). Although choices remain abundant, particularly for those with access to non-chain retailers, it is increasingly difficult for consumers to recognize which companies they are supporting with their purchases.