The 2008 Winemakers’ Federation of Australia (WFA) Vintage Survey has come in above expectations, reaching a total of 1.83 million tonnes.
WFA Chief Executive, Stephen Strachan, said the figure represented success in a challenging year and was testament to the resilience of growers and wineries.
“A harvest such as this should dispel any fears that we are unable to supply our domestic and international markets with the volume of quality Australian wine required,” Strachan said.
“However with increasing pressure around water shortages, a strong Australian dollar and a tough international market, we can no longer compete on price alone. And a high figure such as this raises some concerns regarding the future sustainability of the lower-priced sector of our industry,” he said.
Red grapes accounted for 53 per cent of the total intake in 2008 with a rise of 45 per cent over 2007, while white grapes, representing 47 per cent of the crush, recorded a smaller volume increase of 18 per cent.
Aromatic varieties continue to increase in popularity, with Pinot Noir intake rising 63 per cent to just over 47,000 tonnes and Sauvignon Blanc intake rising 74 per cent to over 66,000 tonnes.