Barefoot Wines

It looks like the “Barefooters” have done it again! Less than a year after Barefoot Wine reached the two-million cases shipped mark, it had surpassed the three-million milestone.

Getting past that mark before the beginning of the fourth quarter is a significant “feet” for Barefoot, the company says, using the first of many foot puns it unabashedly wields in telling its story.

The news comes just weeks after the brand was recognized as “Wine Brand of the Year” for 2006 by Market Watch magazine, which salutes wine, spirits and beer brands that showcase the most promise in their respective categories, based primarily on increased brand awareness and sales growth figures.

Barefoot’s growth is all the more amazing for having never used any marketing support other than a Web site. Instead, it relies on a sales force of “Barefooters” who “spread the gospel nationwide,” says a spokesperson, calling on retailers and vendors, and showing up at local community events and creating “pouring opportunities,” particularly as part of philanthropic events.

The Modesto, Calif. winery is one of the fastest-growing in the country, and has been awarded more than 325 medals in 2007 alone.

“Barefoot’s growing footprint in the popular wine category is a testament to the powerful momentum the brand is currently experiencing with consumers who want high quality wines that are reasonably priced,” says Steve Wallace, national sales director for Barefoot Wine, in a statement.

Barefoot passed the one-million mark in 2005, a 78% increase over 2004 shipments. Bearing the iconic footprint label, the brand was launched in 1986 with just two magnum-sized varietals. Current footprints include 26 offerings across four lines: Barefoot, Barefoot Bubbly, Barefoot on the Beach, and Barefoot Reserve.

www.barefootwine.com

By Nina M. Lentini.