News / Economy

World Wine Output Hit by Weather, EU Curbs

View of the Chateau de Laubade's vineyards in Sorbets, southwestern France, Aug. 24, 2012.
View of the Chateau de Laubade's vineyards in Sorbets, southwestern France, Aug. 24, 2012.
Reuters
​Global wine production fell sharply last year due to bad weather in Europe and a recent policy to drain its "wine lakes," while Chile and United States saw a jump in harvests, according to a report on Thursday.

A vineyard is seen along a road in Mendoza Feb. 1, 2013. Argentina is the world's 6th largest wine-producing country, according to the U.N.A vineyard is seen along a road in Mendoza Feb. 1, 2013. Argentina is the world's 6th largest wine-producing country, according to the U.N.
x
A vineyard is seen along a road in Mendoza Feb. 1, 2013. Argentina is the world's 6th largest wine-producing country, according to the U.N.
A vineyard is seen along a road in Mendoza Feb. 1, 2013. Argentina is the world's 6th largest wine-producing country, according to the U.N.
The International Organisation of Vine and Wine (OIV) said world production was down around 6 percent in 2012 at 251 million hectolitres (Mhl), a level it described as very low. European Union output fell 10 percent to 141 Mhl, with France suffering a drop of nearly 17 percent after a good harvest in 2011.

"We had a difficult year 2012, mainly because of a sharp drop in production, but trade flows mostly held stable," OIV Director General Federico Castellucci told reporters, referring to total wine exports which were stable at 101 Mhl after a long-term upward trend.

The EU policy of digging up vines to end years of surpluses had lead to a reduction of 269,000 hectares between 2008 and 2011, well above the targeted 175,000 hectares, contributing to a recent rise in prices, Castellucci said. Rising consumption also helped push prices up.

"This meant tightness on the market and we need to be careful because once a market is lost it is hard to conquer it back," he said, pointing to higher prices for bulk wines, used to make liquors such as brandy and vermouth or vinegar.

Prices for French bulk red wines gained seven percent between August and February, while bulk white wines rose 30 percent, data by French farm office FranceAgriMer showed.

A new configuration

A manager looks at wines at the Marco Polo restaurant at the Grand Intercontinental Hotel in the Gangnam area of Seoul, South Korea, Oct. 2, 2012.A manager looks at wines at the Marco Polo restaurant at the Grand Intercontinental Hotel in the Gangnam area of Seoul, South Korea, Oct. 2, 2012.
x
A manager looks at wines at the Marco Polo restaurant at the Grand Intercontinental Hotel in the Gangnam area of Seoul, South Korea, Oct. 2, 2012.
A manager looks at wines at the Marco Polo restaurant at the Grand Intercontinental Hotel in the Gangnam area of Seoul, South Korea, Oct. 2, 2012.
French exports rose six percent to 15 Mhl, but Italy and Spain, the world's two largest wine exporters by volume, which also had a poor crop although not as bad, saw their exports fall seven and 13 percent respectively to 21.5 and 19.1 Mhl.

Chile, the largest South American producer which had a record output in 2012, saw a 13 percent rise in exports to 7.5 Mhl. South African exports were up 17 percent to 4.2 Mhl, with sales to Britain jumping 50 percent.

This meant that the share of the top five European producers - Italy, Spain, France, Germany and Portugal - in world exports fell to 62 percent, from 65 percent last year, to the benefit of South America as well as the United States whose crop jumped seven percent last year, the OIV said.

Wine consumption increased 0.6 percent last year to 245 Mhl, mainly helped by China and the United States, the OIV said.

Chinese consumption rose nine percent to reach 17.8 Mhl, leading to a total rise in consumption since 2008 of 27 percent, with local output supplying the bulk of the additional demand. Imports only accounted to 0.3 Mhl of the 1.5 Mhl rise recorded in 2012.

"There is a slightly new configuration here. The Chinese start either to make the wine themselves or to import wine from countries where they have companies - it's still a small number but not minimal anymore," Castellucci added.

An increasing number of Chinese wine lovers have purchased French chateaux in the past years, keen to ship the wine home and turn their new properties into tourist resorts.

You May Like

Captured IS Militants Explain Why They Fought

Fighters from Turkey, Syria tell VOA Kurdish Service what drew them to extremism, jihad More

Security Experts Split on Kenyan Barrier Wall

Experts divided on whether initiative aiming to keep out al-Shabab militants is long-awaited solution or misguided effort More

Video Philippines Wants Tourists Spending Money at New Casinos

Officials say they hope to turn Manila into the next Macau, which has long been Asia’s gambling hub More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grievingi
X
Benno Muchler
March 26, 2015 3:41 PM
Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grieving

Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

Indigenous communities in Cambodia's Ratanakiri province say the government’s economic land concession policy is taking away their land and traditional way of life, making many fear that their identity will soon be lost. Local authorities, though, have denied this is the case. VOA's Say Mony went to investigate and filed this report, narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video US, South Korea Conduct Joint Military Exercises

The Eighth U.S. Army Division and the Eighth Republic of Korea Mechanized Infantry Division put on a well orchestrated show of force for the media this week during their joint military training exercises in South Korea. VOA’s Seoul correspondent Brian Padden was there and reports the soldiers were well disciplined both in conducting a complex live fire exercise and in staying on message with the press.
Video

Video Space Program Status Disappoints 'Last Man on the Moon'

One of the films that drew big crowds last week at the annual South by Southwest festival in Austin, Texas, tells the story of the last human being to stand on the moon, U.S. astronaut Eugene Cernan. It has been 42 years since Cernan returned from the moon and he laments that no one else has gone there since. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Young Filmmakers Shine Spotlight on Giving Back

A group of student filmmakers from across the United States joined President Barack Obama at the White House this month for the second annual White House Student Film Festival. Fifteen short films were officially selected from more than 1,500 entries by students aged 6 through 18. The filmmakers and their families then joined the president and a group of celebrities for a screening of their films. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video VOA Exclusive: Interview with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, during his first visit as president to Washington, gave a one-on-one interview with VOA Afghan Service reporter Said Suleiman Ashna, about his request for a change in U.S. troop levels, the threat from the Islamic State, and repairing relations with the United States and Pakistan. The interview was held at Blair House, late Sunday, in Pashto.
Video

Video California Science Center Tells Story of Dead Sea Scrolls

The ancient manuscripts were uncovered in the mid-20th century, and they are still yielding clues about life and religious beliefs in ancient Israel. As VOA's Mike O'Sullivan reports, an exhibit in Los Angeles shows how modern science is bringing the history of these ancient documents to life.
Video

Video Angelina Jolie Takes Another Bold Step

Hollywood actress and filmmaker Angelina Jolie has revealed she had her ovaries and fallopian tubes removed to lower her odds of getting cancer. Doctors say the huge publicity over her decision will help raise awareness about the importance of cancer screening. VOA’s George Putic has more

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More

World Currencies

EUR
USD
0.9211
JPY
USD
119.18
GBP
USD
0.6722
CAD
USD
1.2509
INR
USD
62.518

Rates may not be current.