Like many others across Australia, Tasmania’s wine producers saw many challenges during the 2023 season and have seen the harvest deliver modest volumes of excellent quality.
Wine Australia recently released its National Vintage Report, which estimates volumes will be the lowest since 2000, and this week, Wine Tasmania CEO Sheralee Davies said that the challenging season resulted in low yields in many parts of the island.
“The overall 2023 vintage production is very similar to 2022, with many wine growing areas experiencing significantly lower yields,” Davies said.
“The decrease in yields has been partially offset by newer vineyards starting to come into production, with the island’s total vineyard area continuing to expand.
“Due to the vigilance and tireless management of our producers, the quality of the wine grapes harvested this year is reported to be excellent. With volumes down and increasing global demand, this means Tassie wine lovers may need to get in early to secure wine from their favourite vineyards.”
In 2023, Tasmania collectively harvested 12,390 tonnes of wine grapes, anticipated to produce 895,000 cases (dozens) of wine. The season also delivered another record for the value of Tasmanian wine grapes, up to $3,377/tonne compared with the national average of $642/tonne.
The 2023 vintage numbers report:
- 895,000 cases (dozen) of Tasmanian wine produced in 2023 (down one per cent)
- $3,377/tonne average value of Tasmanian wine grapes (up four per cent)
- 38 per cent of all Tasmanian wine in 2023 = sparkling wine (up from 37 per cent in 2022)
- 0.9 per cent of Australia’s total wine grape production, but four per cent of total value
- Based on wine grapes harvested nationally, Tasmania is 15th by volume but 10th by value
Wine Tasmania said that this year’s challenges came primarily from wet, cool growing conditions, causing delays to the ripening of wine grapes across much of the island.
Across the island conditions differed dramatically from the north-west to the south and the wine growing areas in between. The association said that Tasmania’s wine grape growers are well-versed in adjusting to unexpected weather events that may come their way.