New Zealand grape harvest smaller but ‘full of promise’

By Rachel Arthur

- Last updated on GMT

The Marlborough region (pictured) accounts for nearly 70% of NZ's vineyards. Pic:iStock/cosmity
The Marlborough region (pictured) accounts for nearly 70% of NZ's vineyards. Pic:iStock/cosmity

Related tags Wine

New Zealand’s 2017 grape harvest has been smaller than expected, down 9% on last year, according to New Zealand Winegrowers. However, wineries are positive about the vintage quality.

The 2017 Vintage Survey reports a harvest totaling 396,000 tonnes, with the smaller vintage due to weather conditions.

Philip Gregan, CEO of New Zealand Winegrowers, said: “Generally summer weather was very positive but there were some challenges as the season progressed.

“Given strong demand in overseas markets wineries had been looking forward to a larger harvest this year. With the smaller vintage however, export volume growth is likely to be more muted in the year ahead.”

However, New Zealand Winegrowers remain positive, saying the vintage will deliver the fruit flavors that New Zealand wine is known for.

Gregan adds that wineries across regions are confident about the quality of the vintage.

“The ultimate test will be how the market reacts to the wines when they are released,” ​he noted. “At this stage we are confident the 2017 vintage wines will add to New Zealand’s reputation as a premium producer of cool climate wines.”

Wine is New Zealand’s fifth biggest export good, with wine exports sent to more than 90 countries and valued at $1.65bn per annum.

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