Pernod Ricard Winemakers’ Chairman Bryan Fry expects this season’s vintage to be down nine million cases on the previous year.
November frosts followed by poor weather hampered the bud-burst and flowering of the vines which wasn’t helped by the near-drought conditions that followed this for three months.
Sauvignon Blanc – NZ’s growth grape responsible for over 60% of total wine production and 86% of wine exports by volume – is likely to prove more difficult to come by and more costly for its customers this year as labour costs have also risen in the wake of Covid-19.
As a result some brands are looking at raising the costs by up to 20%.
At the same time South Africa has announced an “exceptional” wine vintage for 2021, with volumes up 9% on 2020 according to the Vinpro South African Wine Harvest Report.
All in all, in conjunction with the French frost-hit vineyards and the Californian & Australian forest fires, wine – both New World and Old World – is likely to be under some degree of supply & price stress in 2021.