QUALITY VINTAGE IN LINE WITH EXPECTATIONS: NEW ZEALAND 2007 GRAPE HARVEST REPORT
Record grape harvest of 205,000 tonnes. Result up 11 per cent on 2006. Increasing exports mean supply constraints will continue. New Zealand Winegrowers Chief Executive Officer Philip Gregan said the 2007 grape harvest was in line with pre-harvest expectations for a crop of between 190,000 and 210,000 tonnes and has produced a high quality vintage.
The vintage is a new harvest high for the industry, up 11 per cent on the previous mark of 185,000 tonnes set in 2006, according to results from the New Zealand Winegrowers 2007 Vintage Survey. The growth is a result of the continuing increase in producing vineyard area, as national yields were similar to last year.
Despite the increased production, it would seem that many winemakers and their customers will be frustrated by shortages as up to two-thirds of wineries harvested a smaller crop than in 2006.
Marlborough led the New Zealand vintage in 2007 with a crop of 121,000 tonnes. Gisborne and Hawkeís Bay dominated production increases this year with their vintages lifting 44 per cent and 26 per cent respectively. Together these three major regions made up 93 per cent of the vintage. Production in other regions totalled just 14,000 tonnes, down 23 per cent on last year. These areas appear to have been more affected by cool December weather which in turn affected vine flowering. This impact was lesser in some districts, notably, Nelson, Auckland and Northland.
Chardonnay, New Zealandís second most planted grape variety, experienced the largest production lift up 44 per cent on the previous harvest. The Sauvignon Blanc crop was up just 6 per For Pinot Noir, New Zealandís second export variety, production fell despite an increased producing area. Production was 20,700 tonnes, down 6 per cent on last year.
The other major varietal change was an increase of 65 per cent to over 6,000 tonnes in the Pinot Gris popular variety internationally.
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Published on 25/06/2007