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Another California Grape Crush for the Record Books

Submitted By: Lewis Perdue, February 10, 2014

California Association of Winegrape Growers (CAWG)
February 10, 2014

Another California Grape Crush for the Record Books

Sacramento, Calif. – A growing season described as “extraordinary” by California winegrape growers has delivered another record-setting crop for the state. The 2013 Preliminary Grape Crush Report, released today by the California Office of USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS), estimates the 2013 grape crush total at 4,685,075 tons, up 7 percent from the 2012 crush of 4,387,434. These crush figures include winegrapes (4,230,567 tons), table type grapes (126,718 tons), and raisin type grapes (327,790 tons). The 2013 winegrape tonnage crushed was up slightly by more than 5 percent from last year’s 4,013,903 tons.

The 2012 and 2013 crop years produced back-to-back bumper harvests of high quality winegrapes and record revenue for California’s 4,600 winegrape growers. Based on average reported values in the Crush Report for red and white winegrapes last year, the delivered value of the 2013 harvest was $3.16 billion, which is 48 percent higher than the 2011 harvest, valued at $2.13 billion.

“Consumer demand for California wine is strong. After short crops in 2010 and 2011, growers delivered two remarkable vintages, with record-sized harvests and exceptional quality,” said Heidi Scheid, chair of the California Association of Winegrape Growers (CAWG). “California wine is well-positioned to take advantage of the large crops and I’m optimistic about our future.”

“With limited water availability and diminishing labor supply, it’s a testament to the ingenuity of growers that they were able to deliver on supply and quality as they’ve done the past two years,” said John Aguirre, president of CAWG.

Once again red wine varieties accounted for the largest share of all grapes crushed, at 2,405,942 tons, up 5 percent from 2012. The 2013 white wine variety crush totaled 1,824,625 tons, up 6 percent from 2012. The 4,230,567 ton winegrape crush in 2013 represents a 26 percent increase over 2011.

“A lot more acres came into production this year throughout the state,” said Nat DiBuduo, president of Allied Grape Growers in Fresno and CAWG director. “The San Joaquin Valley produced higher numbers as well as the North Coast, where vineyard redevelopment resulted in higher yields.”

The Final Grape Crush Report will be released on March 10, 2014 and will contain any late reports or corrections to today’s preliminary report.

CAWG promotes the winegrowing industry’s long-term success by advancing the adoption of sound public policies, and fostering awareness and understanding of winegrape growers’ contributions to the economy, environment and California communities.