The 47-member-state-strong “intergovernmental organisation of a scientific and technical nature that researches wines and vines, wine-based beverages, table grapes, raisins and other vine-based products” had its 42nd World Congress of Vine and Wine in Geneva recently at which OIV Director General Pau Roca presented the overall report on the wine sector.
He told the Congress that world wine consumption in 2018 has been estimated at 246 million Hectolitres with the ‘trade’ – the sum of the exports of all countries – in wine worldwide accounting for €31 billion by value.
Spain leading country for area cultivated
The size of the global vineyard area (regardless of the final destination of the grapes and including vines not yet in production) in 2018 reached 7.4 million Hectares, a slight increase on 2017.
Spain remains the leading country for area cultivated with 969 kiloHectares, ahead of China (875 kHa) and France (793 kHa), but China’s winegrowing area continues to increase.
On the other hand, the EU’s vineyards seem to have curbed their rate of decline and stood at 3,324 kHa in 2018 (10 kHa up on 2017).
Increase in grape production
In 2018, the global production of fresh grapes (grapes intended for all types of use) was almost 78 million tonnes.
Since 2000 the grape production trend has been on the rise (by over 1% per year) despite the decrease in the vineyard area (down 3% over the same period). This is mainly due to a rise in yields, resulting from the continuous improvement of vinicultural techniques.
Despite an 11% drop in production in 2018, China is the world’s leading producer with 11.7 million tonnes (15% of global grape production) followed by Italy (8.6 million tonnes), the US and Spain (both on 6.9 mt) and France (5.5 mt).
The top three European producers recorded a 28% increase in production.
Table grape production doubled in 20 years
The yield of table grapes reached 27.3 million tonnes 2018, a decrease of 1.1 million tonnes in comparison to 2017. This decrease can be explained by a 10% drop in Chinese production which represents more than a third of global production. Nevertheless, with an average annual growth rate of 5%, table grape production has doubled in the last 20 years, contributing significantly to the increase in total grape production over the period.
China remains the world’s leading producer (9.5 million tonnes) followed by Turkey (1.9 million tonnes) and India (1.9 million tonnes).
Historical wine production
Global wine production (excluding juices and must) in 2018 was one of the highest since 2000 with a volume of 292 million Hectolitres, representing an increase of 17% compared to 2017. But it should be remembered that 2017 was marked by very difficult weather conditions that had affected production in many countries.
Italy (54.8 million Hectolitres) confirmed its position as the leading world producer followed by France (48.6 million Hectolitres) and Spain (44.4 million Hectolitres). The level of production in the US remains high (23.9 million Hectolitres).
In South America, however, production increased significantly: in Argentina it was 14.5 million Hectolitres and in Chile it was 12.9 million Hectolitres. South Africa, at 9.5 million Hectolitres, suffered from drought conditions.
As a result of the drop in the grape yield, at 9.1 million Hectolitres, wine production in China remains in a second year of recession with a 22% decrease in production over the 2017/2018 wine year.
Stabilised wine consumption
The available data show a stabilisation of global consumption in 2018, estimated at around 246 million Hectolitres.
Since 2014 the trend has therefore been towards a stabilisation or recovery in consumption in European countries which have traditionally been consumers as well as the development of new consumption poles, especially in Asia.
With 33 million Hectolitres, the US confirms its position as the biggest global consumer since 2011 followed by France (26.8 million Hectolitres), Italy (22.4 million Hectolitres), Germany (20 million Hectolitres) and China (17.9 million Hectolitres).
International wine trade increases value
In 2018 the world’s wine trade volume was slightly down compared to the 2017 level (by 0.7%) at 108 million Hectolitres but its value increased by 1.2% to reach €31 billion.
Looking at the packaging type in 2018, bottled wine represented 54% by volume, followed by bulk wine (33%), sparkling wines (9%) and Bag in Box (4%).
However in terms of value, bottled wine represented 69.7% of the total value; sparkling wines were in second position at 19.8% while bulk wines had 8.6% and BiB only 2%.
Spain (21.1 million Hectolitres), Italy (19.7 million Hectolitres) and France (14.1 million Hectolitres) continue to be the main exporters of wine, accounting for more than 50% of world volume in 2018.
The top five importing countries were Germany (14.7 million Hectolitres), the UK (13.2 million Hectolitres), the US (11.5 million Hectolitres), France (7.1 million Hectolitres) and China (6.9 million Hectolitres). These five continued to account for more than half of global imports in volume terms in 2018.