French wine consumption has plummeted over the past two generations from seven billion bottles a year to three billion, or just one bottle per French adult per week. According to a study by ESC Pau research centre and Toulouse 1 Capitole University, only 16.5% of the population are regular wine drinkers, and most of that is during nights out rather than with meals.
The paper by Thierry Lorey and Pascal Poutet details how younger French don't relate wine with their cultural heritage, particularly those under 30 years old. “Each successive generation represents a general increase in libertarian attitudes and irreverence towards institutions," according to Dr Poutet. Mostly it is French over 65 who link wine to their heritage and they are more likely to drink it daily.