NZ winemakers set for record harvest?

New Zealand winemakers could be set to beat last year’s 345,000 tonne harvest with favourable growing conditions and a growing export market working in its favour.

Grapes ripen in Central Otago

Grapes ripen in Central Otago

A Rabobank Wine Quarterly report released yesterday said that favourable growing conditions could see wine makers beat last year’s harvest, according to a report by the Otago Daily Times.

Steve Green, New Zealand Winegrowers Association president, said the 2014 New Zealand harvest would depend on the weather remaining good and the grapes being of good quality, but that there was no reason why they could not expect another record harvest to equal or build on the 2013.

The relatively small  2012 vintage, resulting low export numbers, were boosted by 2013’s vintage, which was up 28% on 2013 and 5% on 2011, and it is hoped they would be further boosted by 2014’s vintage.

Overall Central Otago saw a 4% increase in yield from 8115 tonnes in 2012 to 8407 in 2013 with the report also saying that New Zealand exports were “finally back in growth.”

Elsewhere other southern hemisphere countries such as Chile have been hampered by drought, severe frosts and bad fruit which are expected to lead to smaller crops.

Although it is expected that bumper crops from 2012 and 2013 will see wineries through the worst and continue to drive export growth.

Australian growers experienced a severe and widespread heat wave with yields expected to be slightly lower than last year while South African growers are also looking at a slightly lighter harvest.


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