New Zealand's 2018 Vintage benefits from warm summer

New Zealand Wine has announced a 6% increase in volume for its Vintage 2018 with the warm summer benefitting the country’s wine growing regions.

A total of 419,000 tonnes of grapes were harvested during Vintage 2018, which is 6% more than in 2017, but less than initially anticipated in a season marked by a very early start to harvesting.

New Zealand Winegrowers ceo Philip Grogan said many wineries had been hoping for an even larger vintage, given 2017’s small harvest.

He said: “We now expect growth in the year ahead will be modest. It will be up to wineries to manage any product shortages from the vintage.”

One highlight from Vintage 2018 is the increased production of red wines.

Grogan added: “Production of both Pinot Noir and Merlot has lifted more than 20% on last year, which will be welcomed by both wineries and consumers. These varieties were down sharply in 2017 and it is very positive to see a return to more normal production levels this year.

“Every vintage is different and ultimately the final test is the quality delivered in the bottle to consumers. We are certain that consumers will enjoy the benefits of the warm summer when they get to taste the wines from Vintage 2018.”

New Zealand wine exports are up by 3% in the last year. Wine is the country’s fifth largest export product. 

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