Global wine production down in 2017 due to severe drought conditions

An international winery organization said Tuesday that global wine production is expected to fall this year — due largely to severe weather conditions that have hamstrung key regions of the industry.

Workers unload stakes at a vineyard in Oakville, Calif., on October 17. The International Organization of Vine and Vineyards reported Tuesday a decline in global wine production for 2017. Photo by Terry Schmitt/UPI | License Photo
Workers unload stakes at a vineyard in Oakville, Calif., on October 17. The International Organization of Vine and Vineyards reported Tuesday a decline in global wine production for 2017. Photo by Terry Schmitt/UPI | License Photo

The Paris-based International Organization of Vine and Vineyards, a 46-nation advocacy group, said drought conditions across Western Europe during the summer are responsible for a decline of more than 8 percent.
The group estimates show that Italian wine production is projected to fall nearly 25 percent by the end of the year.

Production in France will decline almost 20 percent and Spanish production will be 15 percent lower — and Germany will see a drop of 8 percent from last year’s production, the group reported.

Total global wine production is expected to be about 6.25 billion gallons for 2017 — or nearly 33 million 750 milliliter bottles.

Figures from Portugal, Romania, Hungary and Austria will hold steady, the group said, as will South Africa and Australia.

Production for 2017 increased in Argentina and Brazil after lower-than-average levels last year. Chile’s figures were low in 2016 and stayed that way this year.

The world’s top producers of wine are, in order, Italy, France, Spain and the United States.

Although U.S. wine production was predicted to fall this year by only 1 percent, the group reported the forecast was based on data {link:collected prior to the large-scale wildfires that destroyed some wine-making infrastructure in Northern California’s Napa and Sonoma Counties, the state’s largest wine-producing regions.

By Ed Adamczyk