Washington Wine Report '21 Pt 2

Washington Wine Report '21 Pt 2

Bob Larson
Bob Larson
With today’s Fruit Grower Report, I’m Bob Larson. Last year’s extreme heat at the end of June hit a lot of crops hard, including Washington wine grapes. The yield on the 2021 crop was lower, but the quality was high.

So, I had to ask Washington State Wine Commission President Steve Warner if the lower yield means LESS wine from the ’21 vintage? …

WARNER … “I think absolutely is the short answer. You know, we had some pretty big vintages if you think back to 2016 where we were sitting around the 270,000-ton range. ’21 came in around 180,000 tons, so I would say we’d be more in a, demand will definitely be exceeding supply.”

But, could the high quality make up for the lower yield from an economic standpoint…

WARNER … “I think the quality will make up for it. You’re seeing this across the board. I think, for a lot of wineries, and there’s so many factors, I mean, you could call COVID, inflation, whatever you want to chalk it all up to be, it’s probably a little bit of everything. But their demands, their consumers are eyeing their wine and they’re willing to pay a little bit more for it.”

That, Warner says should really help …

WARNER … “I believe that it’s going to be a good balance for them. They’re able to sell the wine that they have and maybe make a little extra money out of it to kind of keep up with inflation.”

Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, Riesling, Merlot, Syrah and Sauvignon Blanc make up 84% of the overall crop.

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