Bad weather in Europe’s leading wine-producing countries will result in extremely low wine production this year. The International Organization of Vine and Wine (OIV) now announced that worldwide production volume is expected to be around 250 million hectoliters, four percent less than last year and seven percent less than the 20-year average.
FRANCE (Paris) – “Wine production in 2021 can be considered extremely low, only just above the historically poor harvest of 2017,” the Paris-based industry association said. This, it said, was the result of unfavorable climate conditions that hit the largest wine-producing countries in Europe hard this year.
Italy, Spain and France are the world’s largest wine producers, responsible for 45 percent of the total. Their yields plummeted by 22 million hectoliters compared to last year due to late spring frosts, hailstorms and torrential rains, he said. French wine production was the lowest since 1957, slipping to third place behind Spain for the first time since 2013.
Winegrowers had coped relatively well with the Corona pandemic, OIV Director Pau Roca said at an online press conference. Now they face “a much bigger problem than the pandemic: climate change,” he said. Adverse weather events are becoming more frequent, he said. There is “no vaccine” for climate change, but there are “long-term solutions that require greater efforts in terms of sustainable practices for viticulture and wine production. The wine industry must adapt “urgently”, demanded the Spaniard Roca.
Breathe a sigh of relief in Germany as a wine country – only marginal losses – particularly fruit-driven flavors
In a global comparison, German wine producers stand out – they were able to increase their production by four percent. Despite the large amount of rainfall this year, German winemakers are expecting “good wine qualities” overall. The estimated harvest volume of 8.7 million hectoliters will be only slightly below the long-term average, the German Wine Institute (DWI) stated in a press release. The grape harvest had started “relatively late” – but this had the advantage that the aromas in the berries could be “particularly well developed” during the warm autumn days and cool nights.
Accordingly, the 2021 wines are “fruit-driven,” explained DWI Managing Director Monika Reule. “They also turn out much leaner than in recent very warm years and bring a fresh, animating fruit acidity.”
Yields varied widely from region to region – harvest levels in the 13 wine-growing regions ranged from extremely low to exceptionally good, the DWI explained. Winemakers along the Ahr River, which was affected by the flood disaster, were able to bring in a good harvest for these conditions, thanks to a great deal of helpfulness and solidarity, it said.