NZ wine industry bounces back with 2022 harvest

New Zealand Winegrowers
Thursday, 16 June, 2022

NZ wine industry bounces back with 2022 harvest

Grape growers and wineries in New Zealand have had an improved vintage this year compared to 2021’s smaller yields, according to New Zealand Winegrowers, and this will help the industry rebuild both its stocks and sales for the year.

“Going into vintage, wineries urgently needed a larger harvest as strong demand and smaller than expected crops in recent years had led to a significant shortage of New Zealand wine. That shortage has caused total New Zealand wine sales to fall 14% from the peak achieved in January 2021, even as wineries supported sales by drawing on stocks which are now at rock-bottom levels,” said Philip Gregan, CEO of New Zealand Winegrowers.

This shortage has led to wine sales falling precipitously, such that last year they were at their lowest since 2004.

“There is no doubt we urgently needed an improved harvest this year after cool weather and frosts impacted Vintage 2021. The main challenge this year was COVID-19, which greatly complicated harvest logistics with Omicron rampant throughout New Zealand just as harvest began. This created additional pressure at a time many producers were already under pressure due to labour shortages,” Gregan said.

Thankfully for the country’s wine industry, this year 532,000 tonnes of grapes are expected to be harvested in New Zealand, which is higher than last year’s harvest of 370,000 tonnes. Almost every winegrowing region contributed to this number and all principal grape varieties are represented in the vintage.

“The improved harvest is good news for the industry and customers. Producers will be able to rebuild seriously depleted stocks and sales, while customers should get to see retail shelves restocked once more. However, rising costs and supply chain disruption remain significant concerns to winemakers as they look to replenish markets,” Gregan said.

“We know demand for New Zealand wine is strong as the distinctive flavours, quality and sustainability of our wines resonate resoundingly with wine enthusiasts around the world. Vintage 2022 is another step towards meeting that demand.”

Image credit: ©stock.adobe.com/au/karel1963

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