SA harvest to drop after record 2013

South Africa’s 2014 harvest is expected to drop by 4.7% this year following a record harvest in 2013, a US government report has predicted.

The Hemel-en-Aarde Valley, where South Africa's finest Pinot Noirs are made

The Hemel-en-Aarde Valley, where South Africa’s finest Pinot Noirs are made

According to data from the US Department of Agriculture’s Foreign Agricultural Service, South African farmers are expected to produce 1.42 million metric tons this season compared with 1.49 million in 2013, as reported by businessweek.com.

The country is predicted to bottle about 1.1 billion litres of wine in 2014, 1.2 billion litres less than was packaged in 2013.

The report said that with a “continuing depreciation of the rand against major currencies, and the shift to bulk exports” would see South Africa export around “500 million litres” of wine in 2014, down from 525 million litres in 2013 in what was a record breaking year for SA exports.

Since 2012, when South Africa was the eight largest wine producer in the world, exports have been boosted by the depreciation of the rand which was the worst-performing major currency against the dollar last year after it lost 19 percent, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

This year it has declined a further 4.1%

New CEO of Wines of South Africa (WOSA), Siobhan Thompson, said in a statement earlier this year that 2013’s record exports was the result of a bumper harvest in 2013 which allowed South Africa to fill the gap left by smaller harvests in Europe in recent years, as well as a growing awareness of the quality of South African wines.

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