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New Zealand bounces back with positive prediction for 2022 vintage

Following a challenging 2021 vintage, with production figures down 19% on the previous year, the latest New Zealand vintage is on track for a come-back, db heard at the annual trade tasting which took place in London yesterday.

New Zealand bounces back with positive prediction for 2022 vintage

New Zealand has seen highs and lows in terms of production in recent years. Total volume of grapes harvested in 2020 reached 457,000 tonnes, an 11% rise from 2019. But 2021 was a different story, with production volumes down 19% to 370,000 tonnes.

A short 2021 vintage made a big impact on sales, as the quantity of wine was not enough to keep up with international demand. The price per litre of packaged New Zealand wine grew 4% to NZD$9.03, reflecting the rising global appetite for the region’s wine.

According to New Zealand Winegrowers, the region was short by a minimum of 63 million litres.

As a result of this deficit, winegrowers were forced to deplete their stocks in order to retain their place in the market.

Figures from January 2022 show that the total value of exports over the previous 12 months was down by only 3% to NZD$1.93 billion. Domestic sales volume also dropped by 9% to 43.9 million litres.

New Zealand winegrowers were previously concerned about the 2022 vintage. Pressures to make up for production losses in 2021 to keep up with international demand were compounded by rising production costs and staff shortages.

Chris Stroud, market manager Europe for New Zealand Winegrowers, told db this morning: “Vintage 2022 was marked by the twin challenges of COVID-19 and labour shortages, due to the closure of the New Zealand border.”

However, the outlook for the 2022 vintage is currently positive. Final numbers for the harvest are set to be released in mid-June, but initial outlooks are promising.

Stroud added: “With the vintage now successfully concluded, we are confident that New Zealand wineries will be much better placed to meet market demand in the year ahead, meaning a return to our export growth trajectory.”

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