By Amy Looker

The Winemakers’ Federation of Australia (WFA) has predicted that 2011 will result in a quality vintage across all price points, despite tough weather conditions for grape growers.

The WFA’s 2011 vintage report estimates that this year’s harvest will come in at 1.62 million tones, up one percent on last year.

However, WFA chief executive, Stephen Strachan, describes this figure as being too high to be sustainable and called on the industry to take a more long-term view.

“It may seem harsh, given the year many people have had, to focus on the longer term rather than the demands of the present, but a harvest in excess of 1.6 million tonnes (despite the rejections) is out of step with the realities of sustainable production and the market opportunity for premium Australian wine,” said Strachan.

According to the report, the Riverland and the Riverina regions increased their share of the crush, while the cooler regions brought in less fruit.

Despite losing increasing market share to sauvignon blanc, the crush of chardonnay increased 23 per cent to 405,000 tonnes, overtaking shiraz as the leading grape variety of the 2011 vintage.


The Shout Team

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