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Five countries reporting an early harvest in 2022

A summer of heatwaves across Europe has resulted in early ripening, and despite many regions reporting lower yields brought about by the extreme heat, there is a positive buzz about the vintage this year. We bring you a list of the regions reporting an early harvest in 2022.

Five countries reporting an early harvest in 2022



Harvesting in Provence kicked off ten to fifteen days earlier than in 2021. Across the region, the fruit is said to be healthy and good volumes are expected to be available.

The first fruit was picked in the week commencing 8 August in the earliest ripening areas across the Provence wine region — AOC Côtes de Provence, AOC Coteaux d’Aix-en-Provence and AOC Coteaux Varois en Provence.

Despite heat and water stress, all the signs point to a vintage with great potential. Sunny days and cool nights returned after storms in mid-August which, whilst replenishing water supplies for the vines, also brought hailstorms that caused damage on some properties along the Var coastline.


Picking was officially allowed to commence in Champagne on Saturday 20 August, with start dates spread between 20 August and 6 September, depending on the location of the vineyards in the 34,000 hectare region.

The timing of the harvesting is guided by the Réseau Matu, which is a network of hundreds of representative vineyard plots spread across the appellation.

Data from these sites allow the Comité Champagne, with the assistance of volunteer professionals, to track and analyse the progress of grape ripening in real time, allowing the region to find optimal harvest dates.


The grapes of Bordeaux are looking healthy and ripe, but with one key difference; the harvest that once started in mid-September is now happening earlier than ever — in mid-August, as severe drought and the effects of climate change take hold of the region.

Despite heatwaves and wildfires, the region has seen signs of a very positive vintage, although with lower yields.


The harvest was also brought forward in Burgundy, but just before it began there were several days of rain, which helped to increase the yield and ensure both quality and quantity.


Roussillon hopeful of quality harvest despite grape size

Harvest time came early for the Roussillon region in France, with the first pickings recorded on 3 August, and despite a reduced yield caused by local heatwaves, producers are hopeful about the quality of the 2022 vintage.

The intense heat in Roussillon meant early flowering, maturing, and harvesting. In most cases, this also led to lower yields as vines struggled to retain moisture.

Small grain muscat was the first varietal ripe ready for picking, despite its diminutive size.



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Spanish winery Caserío de Dueñas, located in the Rueda DO, kicked off its earliest harvest in history on 16 August this year, warning that the effects of global warming will continue to see harvest dates creep forward.

Santiago Mora Poveda, director general of DO Rueda, told db at the time that he expected more wineries in the region to begin picking Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay grapes the same week, followed by Verdejo the following week.

“The extreme hot conditions will influence the harvest,” he said, “first of all advancing it by about 7-10 days. Right now the health of the grapes are perfect.”


Other regions in Spain have seen similar early harvests as a result of heatwaves across the country, commencing on 27 July in parts of Cataluña.


The sherry region has also seen its earliest ever harvest, beginning on 28 July.


Douro Valley

Extreme heat and drought in the Port and wine producing region of the Douro are likely to produce an extremely small vintage, although some exceptional wines are expected from this year’s harvest – which began in late August.

It’s been a year of heat waves and very little rainfall – more than 70% lower than the 30-year average – that will ensure that yields in 2022 will be dramatically reduced.

Indeed, such conditions, which come on the back of three years of lower-than-average rainfall, are creating concern for Port producers and winemakers in the region, who are seeing vineyards suffer, while the resulting reduced yields from a hot, dry and windy growing season will push up the price of production, on the back of other inflationary pressures.

Nevertheless, for those sites with old, established vines that are better placed to cope with climatic extremes, it is thought that the wines, and Ports that will be made from them, will be extremely good.

Speaking to the drinks business in August from his vineyards in the Pinhão valley, managing director at Quinta do Noval, Christian Seely, said that this was a low-yielding and early year – with harvesting at the property starting last week for white grapes for making table wines.


Five countries reporting an early harvest in 2022


La Scolca winery in Piedmont is expecting a good vintage this year, despite extreme weather. Flowering commenced in the last week of May, 10 days earlier than in 2021, with the same advanced start for véraison. In the summer, dry and sunny weather accelerated the ripening of the grapes, bringing the harvest forward.

The first musts of sparkling wine base confirm predictions of a good vintage for Gavi La Scolca, reporting a good level of acidity despite the summer heat.


Five countries reporting an early harvest in 2022

This year’s main wine harvest is starting exceptionally early in the German wine regions, creating parallels with the hot 2018 vintage, due to the continuously sunny weather.

According to the German Wine Institute (DWI), the prospects for a high-quality 2022 vintage are very promising. This is because a large part of the vineyards in the German wine regions are still doing quite well despite the extreme drought. The grapes are in good health and there have been no major storms so far.

Black grapes are benefitting from the hot weather, giving hope for full-bodied and colour-intensive red wines. The white wine grapes are also reportedly aromatic with moderate acidity.

The grape harvest will end with Riesling, which is expected to be ready for harvest in mid-September.

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