Categories: South Africa

Wine harvest 4% down, but quality outstanding

South Africa’s 2015 wine harvest was expected to conclude at the end of this month with 75% of the grapes already harvested by mid-March.

This was according to Vinpro CEO Rico Basson, who spoke to the media at De Grendel Estate in Durbanville today (19 March).

“We have had a fantastic season for the third year in a row and while the crop will probably not be quite as big as last year’s record crop, we expect it to be in the same ballpark,” said Basson.

In 2014 the local wine industry produced the largest crop ever of more than 1,5 million tons. This year’s crop was expected to be 3% to 4% smaller, according to Francois Viljoen, manager of VinPro’s consultation service.

For most cellars harvest kicked off about two weeks earlier than normal. “This was the earliest harvest in decades, partially due to a warmer-than-usual August, followed by a hot, dry and very windy summer, which required additional irrigation. However, ideal, dry conditions during harvest time ensured healthy grapes with minimal occurrence of disease or rot,” said Viljoen.

“I can say with confidence, it has been a fantastic vintage,” said De Grendal cellar master Charles Hopkins.

Yields in the coastal regions such as Durbanville were about 10% down, but this was compensated for by higher yields in other regions, like the Orange River, said Hopkins.

More good news was that domestic wine sales increased by 7,3% in 2014, the largest increase in more than 20 years.

Share
Published by
Caxton Magazines

Recent Posts

World Food Day focuses on healthy diets for a #zerohunger world

This year’s World Food Day, to be celebrated on 16 October, marks the 74th anniversary of the founding of the…

24 hours ago

Below-normal summer rain predicted as dam levels decrease

Although water supply scenarios for much of the country are currently deemed comfortable, forecasts of a chance of below-normal rainfall…

4 days ago

World Egg Day: celebrating the many benefits of the egg

Today – 11 October - marks World Egg Day, a global salute to the health benefits and versatility of the…

4 days ago

‘Crime and drought must not let farmers lose hope’ – Didiza

Safety and security on farms continues to be one of the main challenges that the South African farming sector has…

5 days ago

Global food price index up 3,3% year to year

September’s global Food Price Index remained unchanged from August at nearly 170 points, but was 3,3% higher than the corresponding…

5 days ago

Northern Cape welcomes R30 million in drought aid

Agri Northern Cape welcomed the announcement by Deputy President David Mabuza that R30 million would be made available for the…

6 days ago